Scanty rainfall and consequent crop loss has started taking its toll on Bundelkhand farmers. While two farmers committed suicide, two others died of shock and a farmer’s wife attempted suicide in the district in the past 48 hours.
However, the district administration continues to be in a denial mode, refusing to acknowledge agrarian crisis as the reason for the unnatural deaths. The administration said the cases were under investigation.
According to information, Rajkumar Ahirwar, 26, a scheduled caste farmer, committed suicide by hanging himself to a tree in his field at Sarkhadi village under Jaisinagar block on Sunday morning.
Ahirwar’s cousin Bhagoni said his brother must have taken the extreme step due to crop loss, as in the past couple of years he had sold four acres of land to repay loan taken from a local moneylender and was left with only one acre of land.
Ahirwar had taken some land on contract for farming, but this season’s crop failure was too big a blow for him to bear, Bhagoni added.
In another incident, Imrat Patel, 38, a resident of Godai village, committed suicide by hanging himself at his farm. One of his family members spotted the body on Tuesday morning.
The Karapur police said they were probing the case, but added that prima facie it appears that Patel was into drinking, which could have been the cause behind his suicide.
However, Patel’s younger brother Bharat said that the family had four acres of land and some more had been taken for farming on contract. The family had a debt of around Rs 1-1.25 lakh.
“Since crops have failed over past few years successively, we were desperate for a good crop this season, but when the crops failed again, my brother committed suicide in agony,” Bharat said.
Imrat is survived by his wife and five children.
2 farmers die of shock
Two cases of death of farmers due to shock have also been reported from the district. Dayaram Ahirwar, 50, a Scheduled Caste farmer from Rajoli village, had gone to his farm for crop harvesting on Sunday, but when he returned, the farmer told his family members about the pathetic situation of crop.
After a while, he complained of chest pain and died. He had around four acres of land and had a loan of around Rs 80,000 on his head.
On Monday, the villagers reached Rahatgarh and submitted a memorandum in the name of chief minister to the sub-divisional magistrate demanding the survey of crop loss and compensation.
In the second incident at Baraz village, Jamna Pyasi, 55, was harvesting crop at his farm on Monday afternoon when he suffered cardiac arrest and died.
The villagers said that he was under stress for some days due to pathetic condition of his crop, which he had sown in his five acres of land.
In a suicide attempt case, a farmer’s wife consumed pesticide at Ranipura village on Monday night. Nirmala, wife of Jagmohan Yadav, 30, was reportedly depressed as soybean sown by her husband in three acres of land had been totally destroyed.
Nirmala is undergoing treatment at the district hospital in Sagar. The couple has three small children.
Sagar district collector AK Singh said the cases were being investigated and the reason of deaths could be ascertained after completion of the investigation.
He further said that survey to assess the crop loss in the district was underway and report would be prepared and sent to senior level soon.