FAMERS SUICIDE IN INDIA: REALITY, REASONS AND REMEDIES
Keywords:farmland, Drought, Agriculture, Indebtedness, Farmer, Suicide
Several studies have been conducted by the Government and social science organizations to analyse the agrarian crisis and farmers suicides. Based on my experience as District Development Manager (DDM) in District Betul of Madhya Pradesh, which incidentally is adjacent to, identified distress districts in Maharashtra. I have tried to summarize causes of suicides and suggested remedies in the paper. Central and State Government have announced the relief packages to the suicide affected families in Maharashtra. NABARD is the implementing agency of the package provided by Central Government. In the budget of 2008-09 Honourable Finance Minister has also announced massive write off to the tune of Rs.60000 crore of the outstanding loan of small & marginal farmers and OTS for other farmers.
Statistics say nearly 4,00,000 farmers committed suicide in India between 1995 and 2018. In over two decades of The Statistics focused on data on farmers suicide to human grief, struggle, brave fight-backs and several complex, crumbling worlds within that world – things that I hope to show in this narrative. Around the mid 1990s, a liberalised and globalised economy engulfed great many unsuspecting farmers in problems that were beyond their comprehension, triggering suicides that surged in the early 2000s. In the cotton hinterland, I was waking up to life and living against the backdrop of premature deaths of young and old farmers and a new India taking shape in the new millennium. India’s economy was now fuelled by sectors other than agriculture, like services.
Local farmers’ markets were invaded by global markets, like that of cotton or food. Rapid upward economic mobility of sections of the population was creating newer inequalities, leading to a perception among the peasantry that they were losing out. The fast-changing economic conditions were also altering long-held social equations.
Landed farmers, once among the respected classes in a village economy, were now unable to meet their ever-growing needs, while the non-landed classes, absorbed in the unorganised service economy, migrated out of their villages to urban centres for better wages and work, doing marginally better than they once did as farm labourers. Agriculture was said to be the sole bright spot for India’s gross domestic product growth, clocking a positive growth rate when other sectors fell to the pandemic during the last two years. But the growth did not translate much for agricultural labourers as at least one agricultural labourer died by suicide every two hours in 2021.Some 5,563 agricultural labourers died by suicide in 2021, according to the latest report of the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB). The number of suicides increased by nine per cent from 2020 and by around 29 per cent from 2019.Some 5,121 of the 5,563 suicides by agricultural labourers during 2021 were by males and 442 were by females.The most suicides were reported from Maharashtra (1,424), followed by Karnataka (999) and Andhra Pradesh (584), according to the report Accidental Deaths and Suicides in India.The data comes at a time when more farmers have become labourers and an average agricultural household depends more on wages than the farm.
Farmers Suicide in Maharashtra An Overview, www. Maharashtra.gov.in
YASHADA, TISS (Tata Institute of Social Sciences) and Sakal Agro Won Vidarbha
Agrarian crisis/ Relief Package/ Social Watch Report/ Green Earth/ Help Age India
Agrarian Crisis - nature, causes & remedies.
Farmers suicides - P. Sainath Case Study of Prof. K. Nagraj (Madras Institute of
Dev. Studies) http://www.indiatogather.org/ 2007/nov/psa-mids1.htm
Suicide of Farmers in Maharashtra Background papers, Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai 26 jan 2006.
Study on Agricultural Indebtedness by Expert Group – Report of Prof. Radhakrishna
THE NEWS – www.the news. com. pk/ daily-detail. asp
Spot light/Even now farmers suicides inVidarbha
Report of the Expert Group on Agricultural Indebtedness, Ministry of Finance Government of India July 2007.
Green Earth Social Development Consulting Pvt. Ltd.
Farmers suicides-by Pandharipande-Nagpur
Agrawal Rimjim, “Resources Poor Farmers In South India – On the Margings or frontiers of globalization? , Research pa paer no 2006/97, seprmber 2006.
Business India , July 30, 2006.
Mohanty, B.B. 2001, “ Sucides of farmers in Maharashtra : A socio economic Analysis “, Review of development and change. Vol. 6 No. 2Ppl 146-89
How to Cite
Copyright (c) 2022 International Education and Research Journal (IERJ)
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.