New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Monday sought the response of the Government of NCT Delhi on a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) seeking direction for the restoration of sanitary napkin facility for girl students of government schools and asked: "Why was it stopped?"
A Division Bench of Delhi High Court headed by Justice Vipin Sanghi on Monday while seeking a response from the Delhi government asked it to restore sanitary napkins facility to girl students of Delhi government schools.
The court also directed the Delhi Government to immediately frame a policy in order to continuously and uninterruptedly provide the facility of sanitary napkins to girl students and not depend upon the system of inviting tenders for this purpose and also directed the government to file its counter reply within four weeks. However, appearing for Delhi Government Advocate Santosh Kumar Tripathi apprised the court that due to some tender issue it was stopped for some time. Now new tender has been floated and the facility of sanitary napkins will be restored on June 26, 2022.
Advocates Ashok Agarwal and Kumar Utkarsh appearing for the petitioner Social Jurist argued that the government of Delhi has no justification to discontinue the facility of providing sanitary napkins to the girl students of schools which are very much needed for the hygiene health and education of the girl students. The next date of hearing is July 6, 2022.
The PIL moved by NGO Social Jurist stated that the Directorate of Education (DOE) of the Delhi government had adopted the Kishori Yojana scheme where girl students studying in its schools were to be provided sanitary napkins to maintain their personal hygiene and general health and also to remove obstacles in their studies.
It was submitted that the DoE through circulars of March 7, 2018, 11 April 2018, February 6, 2019, December 16, 2020, and June 18, 2020, had directed the head of government and government-aided schools to distribute sanitary napkins to the girl students.
The petitioner has submitted that since January 2021 the girl students in DoE-run schools were not getting sanitary napkins. Restoration of this facility is very important and necessary for the girl students for their personal hygiene and general health as in its absence, their education and attendance are adversely affected. In this regard a letter was written by the All India Parents Association (AIPA) to the Chief Minister of the Delhi government on May 13, 2022, thereby requesting for immediate restoration of this facility, the petition stated. It is also submitted that the action of not providing a sanitary napkins facility is irrational, unreasonable, arbitrary, and violative of the fundamental right to education of girl students as guaranteed under Articles, 14, 21 and 21-A of the Constitution of India and under the provision of Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009 and Delhi School Education Act, 1973. —ANI