THE Supreme Court has recently rejected a plea, seeking State governments to implement nationwide menstrual leave for employed women, and observed that this being a policy matter, the Centre has to take a call on the same. “Period leave” for employed women has been a topic of debate in India for some time now, especially after the Indian restaurant aggregator Zomato’s decision to give up to 10 days of the same per year, which, however, stirred controversy on gender equality. Menstruation is no longer a taboo in our country, but people often judge you when you talk about it openly. Since ages, women have been a victim of misconceptions surrounding menstruation which has been an impediment in their growth at the workplace. They face discrimination and are contrived to suffer menstrual pain in silence at the beehives. The severity of period-related pain and cramps (dysmenorrhea) experienced by women add to their mental strain. While this leave policy is not widespread world over, it is gaining traction in some foreign countries like, Spain, Japan, Taiwan, etc., where legislations are already in vogue which entitle employees to paid menstrual leave. Providing “period leaves” for women can help companies promote gender equality and support the well-being of their women employees.
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