Periods are normal. They are not inappropriate and there is no room for shame while talking about them. Recently when the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi spoke about menstrual hygiene in his Independence Day speech, his initiative to address the issue from the Red Fort was appreciated by one and all.
Bollywood celebs have also been supporting Instagram campaigns that talk about mentrual health. Actor Kirti Kulhari who posted about one such campaign, says, “It’s deplorable that menstruation and conversation around it has been shamed for centuries. There should be no need for code words for period, no need for wrapping newspapers around a pack of sanitary pads when buying it and asking for a pad doesn’t have to be a hushed request. Stains are foreseeable outcomes of having a period and we need to be okay with the fact. It’s time we ended period shaming and the silence surrounding it.”
An NGO, Humans For Humanity, which had been working to spread awareness around menstrual hygiene through various campaigns have kicked off Red Cloth Campaign during the pandemic, to keep the ball rolling. This initiative talks about breaking taboos around periods. “We are inviting everyone to participate; take a step forward towards normalisation of opening conversations around periods to pull it out of the myths it lies embroiled in. One can participate by simply tying a red cloth around the wrist and putting up the picture as a post or story on Instagram with the hashtag in the caption,” says Anurag Chauhan, founder of the NGO, who is now taking the virtual route to spread awareness on menstrual hygiene.
Actor Lisa Ray and singer-actor Shibani Dandekar have also supported the campaign along with many social media users, who have been sharing their stories by posting pictures of hand tied in red cloth. And while posting about the campaign, the actors are tagging their co-stars to make the chain bigger and thus creating more impact.
Sharing her views on menstrual health and campaigns, actor Kubra Sait adds, “It’s extremely important to talk about menstrual health. I’m so grateful for Indian filmmaker and producers to take up this entire conversation from India to the global level. It’s still so crucial that we bring it to every school, every elementary level so that girls and also boys can speak about this. We should normalise it, instead of it being some sort of taboo, we can’t speak of… I’m extremely blessed and lucky to have such conversations at home! And what NGOs are doing to spread awareness about it is excellent. While such conversations happen on an educated level, it also needs to take place where eduction is also needed.”
Bollywood choreographer Sandip Soparrkar also shared about the campaign on his social media, and feels “it’s high time we stop talking about periods in hush tones”. Soparrkar dressed in red and put a tilak on his forehead to support the campaign on his social media handles.
Another actor who has shown support to this cause is Divya Seth Shah. She says, “Misogyny found varied paths down the ages. Subjugation and Superstition fuelled them. The silence and shame centered around menstruation has remained. A bodily function that propelled the human race is rendered unspeakable by centuries of social taboo. Time to change that. The rite of passage into adulthood. Just making it real and dignified, and the Red Cloth Campaign is a powerful visual declaration of the end to this silence.”
Author tweets @ruchikagarg271
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