Six farmers have committed suicide in Vidarbha in the last two days even as Rajnath Singh led his Kisan Yatra into the region in support of the crisis-ridden farmers.
According to information available, among the six victims, three were from Akola where the BJP president was camping on Thursday night while one each are from Yavatmal, Buldhana and Gondia district.
Kishore Tiwari, convenor of the Vidarbha Janandolan Samiti that has been documenting the suicides since 2001, claimed the farmers have taken the drastic step because of crippling debts and not getting remunerative prices of raw cotton and paddy. With the deaths of these six farmers the toll has touched 25 this month alone.
Tiwari ridiculed the BJP chief for not visiting a single affected family during his two-day tour in the region to get a first hand account. He termed the entire exercise as pre-election gimmicks.
However, he appreciated the gesture of Rambahu Mhalgi Prabodhini — a Sangh Parivar outfit — to adopt 500 children from the suicide-hit families. Moreover, the organisation will provide financial and moral supports to widows.
The family support scheme is designed to create an environment of self-sufficiency among the widows.
The BJP chief handed over demand drafts of Rs 10,000 each and a sewing machine to some widows of the farmers at the party's rally in Yavatmal on Friday.
Similarly, children of farmers were given demand drafts of Rs 3,000 each to enable them to meet their educational expenses. The party had generated a fund of Rs 75 lakh for the purpose which was handed over to the BJP chief during the rally.