Kerala University becomes the first university to announce menstrual leaves

by Subhechcha Ganguly

In a remarkable move for a higher education institution in Kerala, Cochin University of Science and Technology (Cusat) allows students to request an additional 2% condonation of low attendance for each semester under the heading of “menstruation perks.” According to Cusat regulations, each semester’s required attendance rate is 75%. That criterion will be lowered to 73% by the new order. The order from Wednesday satisfies a long-standing desire of the more than 4,000 female students who are enrolled in several streams, including PhD programmes, at Cusat. Namitha George, the chair of the students’ union, expressed her satisfaction and described the choice as “much-needed.”

Student unions had called for a set amount of “menstrual leaves” each semester, but the authorities objected due to “practical issues,” suggesting that the lack in enrollment be excused. The unions agreed to this. The order states that “the VC has directed to sanction an additional 2% of condonation of shortage of attendance to female students, in each semester.”

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