Recently, in the first of many, Zomato introduced the provision of period leaves for their female and transgender employees. This positive shift in work-culture and acceptance gained a lot of traction on social media. 

However, did you know that the concept of official menstrual leaves isn’t alien to India?


28 years ago, the Bihar government had a similar leave pattern in place. They granted a two-day menstrual leave to women.

According to government orders dated back to January 2,1992, all women who were regular government employees were given two consecutive days of special casual leave every month due to “biological reasons”. 

The guidelines further revealed: 

All women staff is eligible to avail two days of special leave every month because of biological reason. This is in addition to all the other eligible leaves. 

Though in one of the sessions, the Indian parliament rejected Congress Lok Sabha MP from Arunachal Pradesh, Ninong Ering’s private member’s Menstruation Bill, 2017 which proposed a 2-day menstrual leave.

Med Life

The idea behind this motion was to ensure that female industry workers, leaders and influencers had legislation to fall back on that could not justify lower pay or withholding of promotions because of their biological cycle. 

Rupi Kaur

In fact, a couple of years ago, before Zomato, website Culture Machine and Gozoop and digital marketing firm FlyMyBiz, also sanctioned period leaves to their women staffers. 

Quirk Heaven

So technically, now that you come to think about it, the whole idea of menstrual leaves isn’t an outlander concept in our country. It just needs to be implemented,normalised, and accepted more.