The government has decided to provide free-of-charge sanitary napkins to schoolgirls starting this month.

At its meeting on Monday (01), the Cabinet of Ministers green-lighted a proposal presented by Education Minister Susil Premajayantha to carry out the program annually.

Thereby, as many as 800,000 schoolgirls from rural schools, remote schools, estate schools, and urban schools with poverty-stricken students, will thus be provided with sanitary napkins free of charge.

According to the government, out of Sri Lankan’s student population, which amounts to approximately 4 million, a total of 1.2 million are menstruating schoolgirls.

Last month, the revealed that sanitary napkins are subjected to unreasonably high taxes in Sri Lanka, which amounts to 47.1% as opposed to 30.6% on gold jewellery, 22.3% raw silk, and 22.3% golf clubs, golf balls and military artillery weapons.

Meanwhile, a recent survey made an alarming revelation about period poverty in Sri Lanka. As per the study, 40% of menstruating women and girls in Sri Lanka have stopped using menstrual products against the backdrop of the ongoing economic crisis.