Bhubaneswar: Union Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Sunday launched the Ujjwala Sanitary Napkins initiative from Odisha’s capital, Bhubaneswar.
The initiative is a part of a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) by Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs)— IOCL, BPCL, and HPCL.
Under this initiative, the OMCs will set up as many as 100 local manufacturing units at Common Service Centres across the State at a cost of Rs 2.94 Crores.
As per NFHS-4 report, overall use of sanitary napkins in Odisha is 33.5 percent. Only 42.8% of rural women between the age of 15-24 years use proper hygienic methods during menstruation.
The initiative aims at achieving objectives of improving women’s health by encouraging basic hygiene practices and empowering women through employment.
According to reports, women will be trained in the manufacturing and sale of sanitary napkins. With the capacity to produce 1200-2000 pads each day, every facility will have a sterilization room to ensure that the napkins are sterilized before they are packed for consumption of rural women.
Each manufacturing unit will employ 5 to 6 Ujjwala beneficiaries thus providing employment to nearly 600 women across all districts. The sanitary pads, made of biodegradable products, will be available at 864 Jana Seva Kendras in the district at a price of Rs 42 per pack of 8 pads.