Odisha government to provide Re.1 sanitary napkins to women in rural communities
Sensitive Governance and Women-friendly state: Odisha
Sensitive governance at the fore as Odisha announces sanitary hygiene initiatives for school girls and rural women.
Yet another step towards women empowerment and gender neutrality
Monday, March 5th 2018: Taking forward their narrative of women-friendly governance, the Odisha government launched a state-wide campaign to provide free sanitary napkins to every school girl in government schools across the state. In addition to school-going girls, the Odisha government will also provide sanitary napkins to women in rural communities at Re.1 each.
“Women empowerment is very close to my heart,” said the CM Naveen Patnaik. “From Mission Shakti that has benefitted 5mn women to MAMATA Yojana and 50% reservation (in Urban local bodies), women have been the focal point of all our key interventions.”
“Biju Babu,” added Mr. Patnaik, “has been the initiator and the pioneer for empowerment of women, and I am taking forward his legacy.”
This most-recent campaign titled Khushi, will be implemented by the health and family welfare department of the state at a cost of 70 crore per year.
Odisha is the only state in India where 63.5 % women own immovable assets: land and homes, against the national average of 35%. Record 1 million tribal girls have been provided scholarships for education. Half a million tribal girls are in government-run hostels. Additionally, girls get Rs.8000/- as monthly allowance to stay in school.
3.5mn women have been benefitted by MAMATA Yojana: India’s largest cash-transfer maternity benefit scheme. It compensates pregnant and nursing mothers for loss of wages, better nutrition and vaccinations. The success of Mamata Yojana is evident from the fact that Odisha boasts India’s lowest Infant Mortality Rate (IMR).
50,000 more babies are saved every year in Odisha due to lower IMR.
5 million women stand empowered by Mission Shakti, a women self-help-group movement. Women are granted loans at 1%. 25000 women entrepreneurs and SHG members were also, very recently, digitally trained by Facebook.
Women athletes are nurtured, and the state sent 6 athletes to the Rio Olympics. In a bid to ensure skill development of women the state bears the cost of education, hostel and monthly allowance for all girls enrolling into Odisha’s Industrial Training Institutes.
The Government of Odisha believes, and has proven that the empowerment of women is a precondition for development. It offers an unprecedented opportunity for societies to ensure that women have equal access to lead public institutions on the path to transformative change.