The Bold Voice of J&K

Farmers suicides in india

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Dear editor,
India is an agrarian country with about 60 per cent of its population dependent on agriculture sector but various reasons are leading farmers to suicide and this is really sad about a country aspiring to play leading role in international affairs and casts doubts about our capabilities. According to an estimate from 1995 to 2013 a total of 2,96,436 farmers have killed themselves, an average of 16,469 farmers suicide per year. A number of reasons are responsible for this, such as monsoon failure, high debt burdens, genetically modified crops, government policies, personal issues and family problems. Various economists like Usha Patnaik, Jayati Ghosh, and Prabhat Patnaik suggest that strucutural changes in macro economic policy of India that favoured privatisation, liberalisation and globalisation is root cause of farnmers suicide. The government appointed a number of inquiries to look into the causes of farm related distress. Krishik Ayog in 2006 published three reports with its findings. In 2006 the government identified 31 districts in the four states of Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Karnataka and Kerala. A special package was launched to end stress of farmers. In 2008 the Government of inda implemented the agricultural debt waiver and debt relief scheme to benefit about 36 million farmers. The government’s response has remained ineffective. The focus is on loans rather than income, productivity and diversifying sources of income.The money lenders continue to offer loans at very high rates while the farmers are still at the mercy of moneylenders. While no appropriate policy is in place to mitigate farmers problems they continue to commit suicides. The policy makers, media administrators have all shown less concern for farmers of the country. This is sad that while government is busy in pleasing corporate sector, farmers continue to commit suicide.
Vijay Kumar
Kishtwar

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