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Valley of death: More suicides

Four more debt-ridden farmers of Vidarbha committed suicides over past 24 hours, reports Pradip Kumar Maitra.

india Updated: Feb 28, 2006 08:52 IST
Pradip Kumar Maitra
Pradip Kumar Maitra

It is a tragedy laced with cruel irony. Four more debt-ridden farmers of Vidarbha committed suicides over the past 24 hours even as chief minister Vilasrao Deshmukh arrived at Yavatmal for the concluding ceremony of the farmers’ awareness campaign sponsored by his party.

Reports said the Vishwas Vyankatesh Choure of Narkhed in Nagpur district consumed pesticide and died on his parched farm on Sunday noon.

He had failed to repay loans to the tune of Rs 30,000 borrowed from the State Bank of India, after his crop failed this year. Moreover, he borrowed money from private lenders at a higher interest.

Similarly, a farmer of Pipalgaon in Akola district ended his life by dousing himself in kerosene. The farmer was identified as Ashok Bhoyar. Another farmer from the district, Dadarao Deshmukh of Kanzhra village consumed pesticide on his farm on Sunday. Deshmukh was having as many as 19 acres of farm land. He was facing a tough time due to crop failure for the past five consecutive years.

He had borrowed money from the Central Bank of India 10 years ago, but failed to repay           the amount.

In another incident, a 70-year old distress farmer of Isoli in Buldhana district ended his life by jumping into a well on Sunday because of mounting debt and crop failure. Over 70 farmers, most of them cotton growers from the region, have committed suicide since January this year.

The rise in cases comes despite the Vilasrao Deshmukh government’s announcement of a special package to help the affected farmers.

ht epaper

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