New Delhi, 28 November: A Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice DY Chandrachud issued notice to the Centre and states on a demand to provide free sanitary pads to girls in classes 6 to 12 in schools.

The petition filed by Dr Jaya Thakur, stated that in addition to providing sanitary pads to girls in government, government-aided and residential schools, there should also be a provision for separate toilets. The petition said that poor girl students of 11 to 16 years are unable to use sanitary pads, there is a danger of disrupting their studies due to this.

The petition also demanded that, apart from providing free sanitary pads to the girl students, guidelines be given for running a three-level awareness program. Under the first campaign, awareness and social apprehensions about menstruation are to be removed. Second, providing menstrual hygiene facilities to girls and women free of cost or at subsidised rates, and third, safe disposal of sanitary waste.