New Delhi: The Delhi High Court asked the AAP government to explain the reasons for non-utilisation of the funds disbursed by the Centre for providing sanitary napkins and creating awareness about menstrual hygiene among school students.
A bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C Hari Shankar sought the Delhi government’s stand on the issue after an application was moved stating that according to information received under the Right To Information (RTI), Rs 27 lakh disbursed by the Centre for providing hygiene products, has not been used.
The court asked the Delhi government to indicate its stand before the next date of hearing on October 16.
During the brief hearing, Delhi government’s additional standing counsel Sanjoy Ghosh told the bench that the Centre disbursed the funds for two pilot projects to provide the hygiene products for Rs 6 per pack.
He said the Delhi government instead planned to provide the products free-of-cost.
The court was hearing a public interest litigation by advocate Setu Niket, who has sought directions to the Centre, the Delhi government and civic bodies to establish a mechanism to provide education on menstruation and menstrual hygiene in all schools here.
The petition has sought a direction to the authorities to ensure that menstrual hygiene products were made available to adolescent girls in schools free-of-cost or at subsidised rates.
It has also sought the establishment of a mechanism to provide education to girls aged 11-14 years about menstrual hygiene and safeguards, and access to trained female teachers or health counsellors in schools on a weekly or a monthly basis for imparting education on the issue.
The plea has said it was imperative to sensitise children in the 10-14 age group about menstrual hygiene and every possible effort should be made by the state to help girls continue with their education.