613 farmer suicides & counting


In just this year alone, an unfortunate 613 farmers committed suicide in Vidarhba region of Maharashtra and the worst part, it’s not over yet. What the government can do, cannot do is a moot point for the time being ? Look at the data below, that’s proof enough that if the government had to do something, they would have done by now.

Vidarbha farm suicides data

  • 2001: 52
  • 2002: 104
  • 2003: 148
  • 2004: 447
  • 2005: 445
  • 2006: 1,448
  • 2007: 1,246
  • 2008: 1,268
  • 2009: 916
  • 2010: 748
  • 2011: 918
  • 2012 : 916
  • 2013 : (Till 5th September —613)

So may be at least now we could focus on what we can do or what we should do because if we don’t then these statistics are only going get worse. In the recent past, we helped about 22 farm widows by giving an opportunity to earn their livelihood. This included giving financial help to buy irrigation pumps, sewing machines, to pay for education, to pay for medical expenditures.

Vidarbha-PhaseII group of vidarbha farm widows Vidarbha-PhaseII-Confirmation

Vidarbha

But helping the farm widows is after the fact that the farmers have committed the suicide, if we have to really make an impact, we have to stop them from committing these suicides.  Kishore Tiwariji from VJAS believes the farmer suicides can be prevented if proper counseling and timely help is provided to the farmers who are under extreme duress. To this extent the team we will aim to address around 3 lakh farmers in total with 200 village level public meeting and 200 group discussion in gram panchayat. The team comprises of 20 activist and around 200 local activist of that block. At the end of this yatra, they would have covered a total of 18 talukas and around 80 blocks.

The total cost of this yatra was estimated to be around Rs 70,000, the money for which was sent today. The yatra will begin on Sep 10th.

Vidarbha-Survey

Once the results of the yatra are available this will be followed up with putting pressure on the district collector, the local administration, the CM to take strong action to help the farmers in distress.

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