Exclusive: Sneh From ‘Period. End of Sentence’ Tells Her Story

Sneh, the lead of the Oscar- winning documentary ‘Period. End of Sentence.’ spoke to The Quint about her battles.

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Cameraperson: Nitin Chopra

Video Editor: Deepthi Ramdas

Initially, we very awkward to face the camera for the first time. We were very hesitant about how everything will work out. But gradually, it did.

Twenty-three-year-old Sneh, the protagonist of the award-winning documentary Period. End of Sentence. spoke to The Quint about her journey of battling stigmas around menstruation in her village Kathikera, near Hapur in Uttar Pradesh. The India-based documentary won an Oscar at the 91st Academy Awards in the Best Documentary (Short Subject) category on 24 February 2019.

Sneh, a graduate in Home Science from a college in Hapur, aspires to work for Delhi Police, and has been preparing for the entrance examinations.

When asked why she wishes to join the services, she says,

‘Kyuki shaadi se bachna hai’ (because I wish to escape marriage).
The biggest thing is that this is the first kind of employment in our village, especially for women. We were very excited that something has specially come for us. This is my first job. It was a big thing for me, and I decided to definitely do it.
Sneh, Lead, Period. End of Sentence.

Sneh says her family was much more supportive but doesn't deny the struggle that went in when she decided to join the sanitary pad-making unit in 2017. Most women faced flak for making sanitary pads.

Sneh, like most other girls, told her parents that they would be “making diapers for kids”.

Initially, we faced struggles. People asked us why we chose this job over any other.’It pays as little as Rs 2,000. Why can’t you find other jobs?’ they asked. Not just me, we all heard this. Later, it became normal and we stopped paying attention to them. We let them say whatever they wanted to, and ignored them.
Sneh, Lead, Period. End of Sentence.

Action India, a Delhi-based NGO, set up a sanitary pad-making machine in the village as a part of the ‘The Pad Project’. The machine, funded by the students of Oakwood school, Los Angeles, raised many questions in Kathikera, while it was being installed in the area.

When the (pad-making) unit was set up, we were already working and got to know that a few people are coming from America (US), and a documentary will be made on us. They asked us if we are ready for it.
Sneh, Lead, Period. End of Sentence.
They came twice and took some 10-15 days to shoot the documentary. I accompanied them the whole time.

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