You might not have heard of PadMan. It is the story of Arunachalam Muruganantham, a social entrepreneur from Tamil Nadu who introduced low-cost sanitary pads. And now, Bollywood celebrities like Aamir Khan, Deepika Padukone are posing with sanitary pads to support the movie! Surveys show that only a little over 57% of women in India have access to hygienic methods of protection in during their periods.
The taboo around periods is so strong that a 12-year-old girl killed herself last year over being ridiculed for the period bloodstains on her clothing.
The film told the story of Arunachalam Muruganantham, a metalworker discontent that his wife Shanthi and the other women in his community to use dirty rags on period days since pads were so overpriced.
So he developed a pad machine! Since his relatives refused to be test subjects, PadMan did the testing himself, with a bladder of animal blood.
Unsurprisingly, he became the laughing stock of his community, but he persisted. Now, his machines for pad making are installed in 23 of the 29 states in India!