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16 more farmers commit suicide

16 debt-ridden farmers in Vidarbha region have committed suicide in separate incidents in just 10 days since the on-going winter session of the state legislature began in Nagpur on December 15, reports Pradip Kumar Maitra.

india Updated: Dec 25, 2008 23:10 IST
Pradip Kumar Maitra

Spectre of farmers' suicide continues to haunt the Maharashtra government no matter who is leading the state administration! As many as 16 debt-ridden farmers in Vidarbha region have committed suicide in separate incidents in just 10 days since the on-going winter session of the state legislature began in Nagpur on December 15.

Ironically, these suicides have been taking place even as both the Houses of the Legislature are discussing the sensitive subject since last Monday and the government is planning to come out with another relief package for the farmers !.

According to reports reaching in Nagpur on Thursday evening, among the victims, five farmers had committed suicide in last 24 hours in the region. Of them, three are from Yavatmal district alone while one each was from Akola and Amravati district.

The latest victims were identified as: Pawan Shyamrao Doraskar of Mazri, Khushal Gande, Botali, Sunil Makkalwar of Bori (all in Yavatmal district), Namdeo Rathod, Sarkheni (Akola) and Ramchandra Ingole of Dhanora in Amravati district.

Kishore Tiwari, president of Vidarbha Janandolan Samiti which has been documenting the farmers' suicide since 2001 accused the state government for such spate of suicide as the government miserably failed to come out with a comprehensive pro-farmer policy, so far.

"We have been demanding for providing food security to poor and marginal farmers. However, the government did not bother about this core-issue and it was not incorporated in the economic packages of the state and union governments," he pointed out.

Tiwari said that besides the food security, there was a need to provide better healthcare for the farmers in the region. "Farmers in the region often either sell out their land or mortgage it for treatment and eventually trap in it when crop fails or not get remunerative prices of their produces," he further pointed out.

Meanwhile, the state government is likely to announce another relief package for farmers. The proposed relief package of around Rs 11,000-crore is almost finalized and the government may announce it on the concluding day of the on-going winter session of the state legislature at Nagpur.