3450 farmers committed suicides in 3 years
As many as 3,450 farmers committed suicides in the country in the last three
years with Maharashtra, the home state of Food and Agriculture Minister Sharad
Pawar, accounting for maximum number of deaths. According to figures provided to
Parliament by Pawar, 1,720 farmers committed suicide in Maharashtra during
2007-09, followed by 1,142 in Andhra Pradesh and 434 in Karnataka.
Farmers' suicides continued in 2010 as well, with six cases in the Vidharba
region of Maharashtra, Pawar said answering questions in the Rajya Sabha.
However, a consolation was that as compared to 2008, the number of farmers
driven to taking the extreme step came down in 2009. On an all-India basis, the
number declined from 1,237 in 2008 to 840 in 2009. The drop in these deaths took
place in all the major states where farmers commit suicides, mostly because of
indebtedness. Pawar said the government had approved a Rs 16,978 crore- package
for four states besides a number of steps including lowering interest rate on
"In order to ameliorate the condition of farmers in areas having
comparatively higher incidence of suicides, the government has approved Rs
16,978 crore rehabilitation package for Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Kerala and
Karnatka," he said. Besides, the Maharashtra government has been implementing a
special package for Vidarbha region, he said. Rs 7,266 crore comprehensive
package for integrated development of Bundelkhand is underway, he said pointing
out that a slew of measures by government including Rs 65,000 crore debt-waiver
for farmers have benefited them.