Mumbai: Periods, a topic that is often brushed under the carpet in the Indian society is gradually paving its way into the mainstream, thanks to the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan. With rising concerns towards sanitation, the cause of menstrual hygiene is seen now acknowledged as a prime component of women’s health by many. And GMR Hyderabad international airport is the latest authority to give a boost to the menstrual hygiene management. The airport installed a sanitary napkin vending machine and an incinerator to mark the International Women’s Day on March 8.
— RGIA Hyderabad (@RGIAHyd) March 10, 2018
The airport, which records an average of 40,000 travellers per day, is one of the busiest airports in the country with a staff capacity of 5,000. The new initiative has been taken to ease the travelling experience of women and make it more comfortable.
“Women all over the country often avoid travelling during their menstruating days due to the fear of unavailability of sanitary pads. The new vending machines will not only provide comfort to the women passengers but also promote safe menstrual hygiene practices,” said an official
Under the under the airport’s signature passenger-centric programme – ‘Passenger is Prime’, the vending machines are installed in all the 26 female washrooms at both, the domestic and international areas of the terminal building. To avail the pads, one has to simply insert a coin of ₹5.
In addition to the vending machine, the airport authority has also installed sanitary napkin incinerator to ensure scientific disposal of the used pads. The airport housekeeping staff has been imparted training to operate the two machines.
“Additional facility of incinerator machines have also been installed to hygienically dispose of the used napkins, and the airport housekeeping team is assisting for this facility,” read a press statement by the airport authority.
Last month, the Airport Authority of India (AAI) had stated that it will make travelling more women-friendly by installing sanitary napkin dispensers and incinerators in all its airports across the country. Although the work of installing the machines began much earlier, the AAI took advantage of the fervour surrounding the PadMan movie and made the re-announcement.
So far it has managed to install the machines in 19 of the airports including the three North-Eastern region- Guwahati, Agartala, and Imphal. The first one was installed at the Indore airport. Airports like Jaipur, Aurangabad, Surat, Varanasi, Kolkata, Pune, Vadodara, Rajkot and others followed the suit. The cost of sanitary napkin range from Rs 1 to Rs 5 in these airports.