Bhubaneswar: Union Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Sunday launched the ‘Ujjwala Sanitary Napkins’ initiative in Odisha capital.
Under this initiative, which will cover 93 blocks of Odisha, Oil Marketing Companies will set up 100 manufacturing units at the Common Service Centres across the state at an estimated cost of Rs 2.94 crore.
The core objective of the mission in Odisha is to educate women on female hygiene and health, improve accessibility to low cost eco-friendly sanitary pads and boost rural employment and economy.
According to NFHS report, only 33.5 per cent of women have access to proper hygienic methods of protection during menstruation.
“I congratulate the Common Service Centres and the oil companies for this joint venture. Ten women will get employment at each cente. Four to five of them will be engaged in manufacturing the napkins and the rest for selling the product.”
Virgin wood pulp sheet, non-woven white sheet and a gel sheet, which are all biodegradable in nature, will be used for preparing the sanitary pads. To ensure affordability these have been priced at Rs 42 per pack of eight pads.
Each facility will have the capacity to produce 1200-2000 pads a day, the Union Minister said, adding that it will not only provide the rural women with a dignified channel to earn but also equip them with entrepreneurial skills.
HPCL DGM Dharmendra Behura gave the welcome address.
Among others, gynecologist Dr Sanjukta Mohapatra, Ollywood actors Aparajita Mohanty, Pinky Pradhan, Maheswata Ray and Nalco CMD Dr Tapan Chand spoke on the occasion.