Photos: India’s ‘Menstrual Man’ coming to Vancouver

Published: March 5, 2014

ALMAS MEHERALLY
VANCOUVER DESI

Menstrual Man

‘Menstrual Man’ is a film based on the life of Arunachalam Muruganantham, an Indian visionary empowering rural women.

Meet Arunachalam Muruganathan – an unlikely Indian hero called the ‘Menstrual Man’, who is empowering rural women.

What has he done? He is dealing with menstruation and hygiene problems faced by Indian rural women, a taboo topic for most men.

When Muruganantham, a school dropout, realized that his wife was using unhygienic cloth instead of sanitary napkins, he set out on a journey to make life easier and hygiene affordable for women in villages.

But he could not find volunteers to help him as women had reservations to discuss this problem. He experimented using football bladder and goat blood and the whole village even thought he had a sexual disease.

During his research, he found that only 7 percent of women in India, and only 2 percent out of those from rural areas, used sanitary napkins, which are mostly expensive.

He then came up with an affordable machine for village women to make their own hygienic sanitary napkins and even sell them, empowering them in the process and making them entrepreneurs in their own right.

Once mocked and made a pariah in his own community, he is now acknowledged as a visionary and ‘Menstrual Man‘ is a film on his life story made by Amit Virmani.

‘Menstrual Man’ underscores the importance of empowering women to combat poverty, and the power in every individual to make a difference.

DocuAsia is screening the film in Vancouver on March 12 and 14 at the SFU Harbour Centre and Kwantlen Richmond Campus respectively.

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