Lucknow, Mar 8 : Bollywood actor and Pad Man Akshay Kumar on Friday flagged-off Run4Niine in Lucknow – the largest nationwide run to take place in India, to end taboos around menstruation, to mark the International Women's Day 2019.
An initiative by Niine Sanitary Napkins, the made-in-India affordable yet premium sanitary napkins brand, Run4Niine was supported by the Niine Movement, which launched the nationwide #18to82 campaign movement, to bridge the gap between the 18 per cent of menstruating females in India, who use sanitary napkins and the 82 per cent predominantly engaging in unhygienic and unsafe alternatives, such as old clothes, rags, hay and even ash.
The pan India event saw over one lakh participants from across more than 500 cities in 20 states of the country, including Lucknow, Gurgaon, Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Raipur, Visakhapatnam, Ludhiana, Panjim and Howrah.
Participants from across all genders, ages and abilities, ran, jogged, walked and wheeled for the noble cause of highlighting the importance of safe menstrual hygiene practices and to break the taboo associated with the periods.
In Lucknow, over 4,000 participants joined Akshay at Sahara Shaher for the run, followed by a special concert by singer, songwriter and performer Darshan Raval, who performed some of his most popular songs at the event, aimed to smash the stigma on menstruation.
Akshay took his commitment to supporting fem-force to a new level, when he was seen entering the auditorium in pink trousers, joined by the famous all-women biker group, on their motorbikes. He then took to the stage for a series of interactions with strong women empowerment champions.
Speaking on the occasion about his association with Run4Niine, Akshay said 'I am excited to be partnering with the Niine Movement, to encourage an open and unashamed discussion on menstruation with my fellow citizens, pad heroes, change makers and path-breakers for the Run4Niine.
'Each one of us that takes part in Run4Niine, helps to create an unstoppable force that will beat the stigma around periods,' he added.
Discussing the significance of the International Women's Day, Akshay said 'International Women's Day is a significant day for women and girls across the world; a day when women are not only celebrated for their achievements and contributions in all sectors of life, but a cold reminder of the inequalities that exist in our society, which have kept girls and women back for centuries.
'International Women's Day serves as a fitting day for Run4Niine, where everyone can come together in solidarity, to tackle menstrual taboos,' he added.
Run4Niine is an initiative by Niine Sanitary Napkins, a challenger brand in the menstrual hygiene sector of India.
Speaking about the Run4Niine Lucknow, entrepreneur Amar Tulsiyan said, 'My heartfelt gratitude to thousands of people across hundreds of cities, who took part in Run4Niine. I was also glad to see so many boys and men joining hands to raise their voice against the stigma around menstruation.
'The Chain of Niine has never been stronger, and I'd like to thank JCI India, FOGSI and Mr Akshay Kumar, for their support. People usually run for their own fitness and health. This International Women's Day, they ran for the awareness of health of women in the country, especially during menstruation.
'Niine was created to break the silence and the stigma around periods in India. Today, I can truly say that we are not alone in that wish, and that we are one step closer to improving menstrual hygiene awareness for all.' (UNI)