Padman, the movie, is finally out and more than gaining box office numbers, the movie looks out to create awareness about menstrual hygiene among people. Menstruation is still seen as a taboo in India and many other countries. To curb this ideology and create a healthy environment for talking about menstruation, Twinkle Khanna aka Mrs. Funnybones has left no stone unturned. From interviews at BBC and Oxford University to the PadMan Challenge, she has truly contributed in publicizing the issue so as to be discussed, not only by the millennials but the government as well; not to forget the book ‘The Legend Of Lakshmi Prasad’ of course!
Thankfully, the film has not received opposition from any sort of ‘sena’ unlike SLB’s ‘Padmaavat’. What it has received, surprisingly, is hesitation by the common people to discuss the topic of menstrual health, out in the open. Yes, you may be uncomfortable in watching or even talking about the movie but you must watch it. Here’s why.
Our Very Own Superhero
We have seen superheroes belonging to Marvel Studios and have admired them for their powers which do not even exist in real life. The power of determination to change social norms for a positive cause is a real power and Padman is a symbol of this strength. He is one of us and is real. Finally we have a superhero who does not wear a cape but deserves one!
Menstrual hygiene is unfortunately a luxury in India and a lot of other countries, even the developed ones. The affordability of sanitary pads is influenced by heavy taxes imposed on them. There is 12% GST on sanitary pads in India, to be precise. Women bleed every month and this blood is not the one that is shed when you accidentally cut yourself. This blood is deoxygenated which means it consists of a lot of toxins that the body wanted to get rid of. Most women use two pieces of a cloth interchangeably to soak the blood. Nope! That is not hygienic or safe for the health of these women. Does anyone making laws and framing taxes truly care about women apart from their beauty (the products-bindi, sindoor, etc., meant to enhance the same are tax free by the way)? Well, at least Padman does!
Knocking The Door Of Change
Menstruation is one topic which, not matter how modern we may say we are, was never discussed openly. For all the talks of reasoning, logics and practicality, not a single one adhered to the problem of menstrual hygiene. How could men be open to talking about menstruation when women were to shy to talk about it, even among themselves? Padman has brought a wave of change in this idea. Yes, it will make you feel uncomfortable at first but then it will click the true grey matter in your brain and make you understand the need to converse about it.
Be aware, be logical and go watch Padman!