“Menstruation is the biggest taboo in India” says a social activist in the Oscar-winning Netflix original documentary, Period. End of Sentence. And this rings true, both in urban and rural India. While all of us who live in towns and cities suffer from this taboo in very small ways, in rural India, it is all-encompassing. Women in heartland India don’t have access to proper sanitary products to begin with and then have to face the “shame” of menstruation on top of that.
Director Rayka Zehtabchi takes us straight to these women and their homes, and when they start talking about their plight, is when we truly realize the extent of problem. Some women walk for kilometres at an end to dispose their makeshift pads in wastelands. Sometimes, they do this late in the night just because they would rather not get caught with it in daylight. Some women died of diseases caused by poor menstrual health and other girls dropped out of school just because they were menstruating.
Soon enough, a sanitary pad vending machine is installed in the village which not only helps provide better resources to these women but also empower the entire community by providing employment to women who manufacture these pads. It is amazing to watch these women make the pads and then go house to house trying to convince other women to try them.
A quiet revolution is brewing in the village and women are at the forefront of it. At a less than 30-minute length, Period. End of Sentence provides more questions than it does answers, but it is definitely the beginning of a longer conversation. The film tells us how far we have to go as a country in safeguarding and protecting 50% of our population – the women.
Image Source:- Imdb
Image Source:- Imdb
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