The products should be truly by women, for women and to protect the health of women!
Boxes of used sanitary pads have been sent to the corporate offices of Hindustan Unilever, Procter and Gamble and Johnson and Johnson, which are the major manufacturers of sanitary napkins. “This is just the beginning—we will continue sending such gifts to the companies if they continue to ignore our demands. So what if we are waste pickers, should we be picking up absolutely anything? We are women too, our health and hygiene should be a priority too for these companies!” said Baby Mohite, a SWaCH (Solid Waste Collection and Handling, or officially, the Swach Pune Seva Sahakari Sanstha Maryadit) member from Pune.
A press conference was held on Friday on International Women’s Day at Patrakar Bhawan in Pune where wastepickers expressed the issues they face while handling such waste. “If each pad is wrapped in an identifiable pouch, we won’t even have to open it. SWaCH members who are old and unable to work anymore make such pouches (ST Dispo bags or sanitary towel disposal bags) and sell them at a nominal price of Re1. Companies should attach these pouches to their sanitary pads, that way our old members are supported financially and we don’t have to handle the pads,” said Mangal Kamble, SWaCH member from Hadapsar. SWaCH sells about 20,000 to 25,000 ST Dispo bags every month after a lot of marketing effort. However, each month 4-5 lakhs of sanitary pads are being disposed as per SWaCH. The gap between the two is really wide.
Parisar, an environmental organization states “Waste pickers in the course of sorting through the garbage for recyclable products inadvertently handle these soiled, bloody napkins with their bare hands. This is entirely unacceptable. A simple solution that has been shown to work is to include a disposable bag with the sanitary napkin. This will allow for easy identification and handling.”
Stree Mukti Sanghatana, a women’s organization and a member of the Alliance of Indian Waste pickers while suggesting the elimination of plastic from sanitary pads to make them compostable and recyclable further states, “ Sanitary pads and diapers should be sold along with disposable bags that are being made by slum dwelling women. That way, the products are truly by women, for women and to protect the health of women!”
More and more women should be like Mruga Kirloskar, (citizen and entrepreneur) a regular user of SWaCH ST dispo bags, who has said “I wholly support this initiative. I have been using these bags ever since I heard of them and even promote them among my friends. As a responsible citizen, I feel it is my duty to be accountable for the manner in which I dispose my waste.”
This campaign has been endorsed by organizations from all over the country. CEE (Centre for Environment and Education) has written to the personal hygiene companies suggesting a partnership to implement a pilot program where sanitary pads and diapers are sold along with an identifiable disposal bag. Janwani (a social initiative of the Mahratta Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Agriculture) too has written to the above companies questioning them about the efforts that they have taken or are planning to take in relation to the issue of disposal of sanitary pads.
Dr Nita Mukherjee describes a decade-old effort that is bearing rich fruit
Digital Empowerment Foundation (DEF), a Delhi-based not-for-profit organisation, was founded by Osama Manzar in December 2002 under the Societies Registration Act. Its objective is to uplift the downtrodden using information, communication and technology (ICT). Since Mr Manzar worked in a software company, he was acutely aware of the need to bridge the digital divide which haunts India. A large chunk of India’s population is deprived of even basic ICT; telecom facilities and power are either not available or there’s errant supply. Penetration of computers and Internet is low, despite pious government pronouncements.
The Nifty will find it hard to break through 6,000 in this rally. If it does, the next resistance would be around 6,025
The market settled in the green, snapping its five week losing streak, mainly on signs of economic activity across the world picking up. Positive indicators from Japan, China and the US supported investor sentiments. Indian investors will look at the factory output data and headline inflation figures in the week ahead, which may dictate the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) stand in its policy review on 19th March.
The Sensex climbed 765 points (4.04%) at 19,683 and the Nifty advanced 226 points (3.95%) to close the week at 5,946. The market is likely to see a correction. The Nifty will find it hard to break through 6,000 in this rally. If it does, the next resistance would be around 6,025.
The market settled marginally lower on Monday on unsupportive global cues following news that the Chinese government is looking to introduce initiatives to rein in property prices. The market settled in the positive on Tuesday on global support. Firm economic indicators from the US supported gains in the domestic market on Wednesday.
A recovery in the second half of trade helped the indices close higher on Thursday. The market closed in the positive on Friday on gains in oil & gas, FMCG, metal and banking stocks.
In the sectoral space, BSE Realty jumped 7% and BSE Bankex surged 6% while the BSE Consumer Durables (down 2%) was the lone loser this week.
The top Sensex gainers were Sterlite Industries, ICICI Bank (up 8% each), Larsen & Toubro (up 7%), Cipla and Hero MotoCorp (up 6% each). Hindustan Unilever (down 3%) and Bajaj Auto (down 1%) were the losers.
The Nifty was led by IDFC (up 10%), Sesa Goa (up 9%), ICICI Bank, Jaiprakash Associates and Siemens (up 8% each). The key losers on the benchmark were HUL, Ambuja Cements (down 3% each), Bajaj Auto and NTPC (down 1% each).
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Friday expressed confidence that the economic slowdown will not continue and the country will bounce back to the growth rate of 7% to 8% in next two to three years.
Prime Minister's Economic Advisory Council (PMEAC) chairman C Rangarajan said policy rate cut by the central bank will depend on inflation movement, among other factors. Inflation measured by the Wholesale Price Index (WPI) had declined to 6.62% in January. It was 7.18% in December and 7.24% in November.
In international news, The US added 236,000 jobs in February, while unemployment rate fell to 7.7%, the lowest since December 2008, according to the Labor Department. Investors look at the nonfarm payrolls data as a measure of economic recovery. The Federal Reserve had said it will maintain its low interest rate policy until unemployment falls to 6.5% and inflation rises to 2.5%.
Meanwhile, China maintained its GDP growth target at 7.5% for 2013 and raised its budget deficit forecast as the government reduces taxes and looks at fresh initiatives to support consumer demand.