Bleed Boldly is an initiative, brain child of Urvashi joshi, a history student from Ramjas college and is being run by students of Delhi University aims at creating awareness among masses about menstrual taboos. Its an attempt to shatter away the psychological world that has been created through centuries of false propagation where a woman is made to feel degraded about her natural physiological functions and raising voice against this oppression.
In their first meeting held at agrasen ki baoli along with the Poets Collective – a group of poetry enthusiasts they discussed the role of women and menstrual rituals in Indian culture and epics like mahabharata. Also to be noted was the hard hitting and cynical poem of Aparajita who ridiculed the society which celebrates the man’s blood as sign of valour and chivalry while considers the menstrual blood as dirty and unholy. Urvashi, further cited a study which uncovered the disturbing facts like 88% of slum women still do not use sanitary napkins while 40% women in Iran considers Menstruation cycles abnormal.
The participants also talked about their personal experiences and the need to do away with the regressive and prudish norms prevalent in the society regarding the menstrual health of women and sorry state of affairs. It is asking common students to contribute by donating second hand books, newspapers so that they can be sold and monetary proceeds can be used to distribute sanitary napkins in slum areas after a sanitation and hygiene workshop. People can donate sanitary napkins directly too. Though now in nascent stage, but the initiative aims to make waves and transform it into major awareness drive in near future
(Written by Satya Praskah, He is pursuing History Hons in Zakir Hussain College,University of Delhi)