Kolkata: To highlight the issue of women’s health, the West Bengal government in collaboration with union ministry of health and family welfare, is planning to install sanitary pad vending machines in schools, colleges and other public places across the state.

‘Vendigo’, as the machies are called, is being manufactured by Robust Solution – a Kolkata-based start up – which will dispense affordable and good-quality products during an emergency. For three sanitary pads, one will have to pay Rs10.

“We have got the required permits from the Bengal government and, gradually, we are extending the service to other districts of the state. Both state-run as well as private institutions can install the automated devices,” said Raunak Sarawagi, founder of the start-up.

“We believe that every woman has the right to good health. We have come out with this unique concept of installing sanitary vending machines in government school, colleges, public toilets and other public places across the city....” said Sarawagi.

The move is seen as an effort of the state government to try to educate women and ensure they do not face harassment.

“This is indeed a laudable move as menstrual cycle has always been a issue of shame and women were shunned away from day-to-day activities during the same. I clearly remember, we were barred from entering the family puja room during those days,” said Sumita Das, a professor of social sciences.