Indian PM to help suicidal Kisaan (framers) weighed down by financial fetters


Indian cotton farmer and his sons at Yavatmal outside Nagpur

Many farmers have been hit hard
 
At least 745 farmers have reportedly committed suicide so far this year, due to crop failure and growing debts

They say they are fearful that if the financial package announced does not live up to the farmers’ expectations, then the number of suicides could well increase in the coming days.

 
Debt drives Indian farmers to suicide
 
 
I have to look after our two children, his old parents – and I have to pay his debt back
Rekha Bhan, farmer’s widow

Comment: Suicide is an easy opt out which inflicts further pain & more severe disadvantage especially on dependent wives, children, siblings & parents. Govt intervention ought to have been at the time when it decided to withdraw the subsidy. The farmers ought to have been given interest free assistance with training to diversify into other much needed crops and with further training to deal successfully on open market without being browbeaten by exploitative traders.

 

Although this intervention is a little late – better late than never and better little than not at all I say. This is the beginning of a new empathetic governance – I hope.

 

Both Kisaan (farmers) & Jawaans (soldiers) have traditionally been the keepers, feeders and guardians of India. Both need reciprocal grace from their Government. They both have specific social & political responsibilities entrusted by the Govt. If one sector is looked after during useful service and after retirement why are the farmers simply left at the mercy of the free market forces and that too at their own peril?

 

Latest: 02/07/06: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/south_asia/5136614.stm

The Indian government is giving aid worth nearly $815m (£444m) to crisis-hit cotton farmers in the western state of Maharashtra.

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