The Indian Railways on Saturday approved a new toilet policy where low cost sanitary pads and condoms will be facilitated both outside and inside of railway stations, news agency PTI reported.
“Each facility will have a small kiosk to sell low-cost sanitary pads for women along with provision of an incinerator, and condoms for men,” the policy said.
The policy also aims at using railway premises to build separate toilets for men, women and disabled not only for the passengers but for the people living in vicinity for free of cost. The policy comes with provision of both Indian and Western style commodes in them.
It stated that due to lack of proper sanitation facilities in and around the station premises, those living in the vicinity, especially nearby slums and villages, were often found defecating in the open and urinating in station premises which made the surroundings unhygienic and resulted in health-related problems.
“In order to address these issues, the railways is utilising the station premises to set up facilities having separate toilets for men and women which will be utilised to build awareness for best practices of menstrual hygiene and usage of contraceptives as proposed.”
According to the policy, each station would have two such facilities. One outside the station in the circulating area and another inside the station so that they can be used by people visiting the stations and also those living around them. The funds for setting up these facilities at all 8,500 stations across India would be met through CSR from different corporations and their maintenance would be ensured through advertisements/CSR, the policy stated.
For maintaining the cleanliness of the toilets, three persons – two sweepers and one supervisor — will be engaged by Reputed NGOs engaged with a maintenance contract,” it said.
(With input from agency)