Four more Vidarbha farmers end lives

The scourge of farmer suicides in Vidarbha continues unabated with four deaths in the region’s interior areas reported in the last twenty-four hours.

According to Kishore Tiwari of Vidarbha Jan Andolan Samiti, deaths from the mainly paddy growing eastern parts are reported for the first time.

“This is really disturbing as the region is predominantly paddy growing area, and there were hardly any news of suicides emanating from this part,” Tiwari told Deccan Herald.

As the crisis spilled over to areas where farmers were thought to be safer from the debt burden, farming organisations are preparing to protest against government’s inept response to the situation.

They are planning a dharna with the widows of farmers who have ended their lives on Republic Day.  Tiwari said out of the four who took their lives, three farmers are from Chandrapur and one from Amravati.

Even as the news of fresh suicides trickled in, legislators cutting across party line on Thursday voiced their unhappiness over the chief minister’s “apathy and indifference towards the plight of farmers in the killing fields of Maharashtra.”

On Makar Sankranti, three suicides were reported from Vidarbha’s white gold belt, as the number of cases touched 14 from the beginning of this year. Tiwari believes all political parties are indifferent to the crises.
“It is useless to pin blame on just one political party. All of them have turned a Nelson’s eye to the agrarian crisis enveloping the entire region. If the Congress is busy splurging money on holding ‘Advantage Vidarbha’,to attract investment, then the (principal opposition) BJP’s leader Nitin Gadkari is busy arranging ‘Agro Vision’. Ultimately none of them seem to understand the plight of the people,” he said.

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