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    IIT group developing biodegradable napkins

    CHENNAI: A group from IIT-Madras is working towards developing a completely indigenous bio-degradable sanitary napkin, to curb the pollution caused by the burning of regular ‘pads’ that are used today. According to S Gopalakrishnan, project consultant of the Rural Technology Action Group (RuTAG) attached to the IC&SR in IIT-M, “These days the sanitary napkins that are used by women are disposed off by incineration. While this has been accepted as the best disposal technique in practice, we are against this as the burning of plastic is harmful to the environment.”To change this situation, students who are involved with RuTAG have been working to develop a completely bio-degradable sanitary napkin, without the outer casing of non-woven plastic. “The inside core is standardised and does not cause any problems when burnt, but we are working to find a more eco-friendly outer casing for pads,” revealed Gopalakrishnan, after he addressed members of SHGs and NGOs as part of a symposium on Sanitary Napkin Standardisation and Convergence in Menstrual Health Management. While the progress over the last year has been very good, definite results will be available in the next two years of testing and research, he said.The RuTAG group works with several NGOs that enable the development of SHGs that manufacture sanitary napkins at a reduced cost. “We have been helping several groups develop their products by giving them better technology and solutions. We have given them physical, chemical and herbal agents for sterilizing the napkins and this has had very good results,” he added.