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A Thomson Reuters expose, reveals that women workers in Tamil Nadu were given illegal pills by factories to make them work during menstrual pain. Reuters interviewed over 100 women workers from the garment industry and all of them confirmed the consumption of these drugs, and more than half said their health suffered.

“The women, who were mostly aged 15 to 25, said they were always told to swallow the pills in front of the overseer. They were never told the name of the drugs or warned about possible side-effects,” states Reuters in the report.

The drugs found by them were unlabelled, had no markings, brand name, composition, or expiry date. The women who were using them were also seen to be suffering from depression, anxiety, fibroids, UTIs, and miscarriages.

“These pills are administered by a supervisor known as the ‘timekeeper’, whose job also includes keeping tabs on workers’ hours and even their bathroom breaks besides managing a small medical dispensary,” states the Report.

Following the expose, officials had agreed to look into the matter.

The full report of Reuters can be read here.

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