Monday, December 11, 2006

vidarbha agrarian crisis-farmers suicides toll touches to reports

Another Maharashtra farmer ends life,
toll reaches 1,200

Monday, December 11, 2006

Faced with a loan of Rs.20,000 and stacks of cotton waiting to be sold, a cotton farmer here Monday ended his life, taking the toll this month to 42 and to 1,200 since June 2005.

Maroti Pochanna Potrajwar from Sunna village in Yavatmal district owned three acres land, had six quintals of cotton stacked at home and an unpaid loan of Rs.20,000 when he ended his life, said Vidarbha Jan Andolan Samiti leader Kishor Tiwari.

Keeping indifferent health for the last few days, Maroti could not sell his cotton because the purchase centre at Patan Bori, two km from his village, was closed and the next nearest one at Pandharkawda, 10 km away, was overcrowded with hundreds of farmers already waiting for their turn, Tiwari said.

'Several farmers are waiting in anticipation of some kind of a positive government announcement regarding cotton price and so deferring their plans to sale their produce,' Munna Bolenwar, another farm activist, told IANS.

Maroti is the fifth farmer from Sunna to commit suicide since October last year. The last was young Pradip Bakamwar, who ended his life a fortnight ago. A commerce graduate with 20 acres of land, the newly married Pradip had, in fact, sold his crop but went into depression as the private moneylender who helped him sell the cotton swindled his money.

Sanjay Jiddewar, Subhash Mamidwar and Shamrao Martawar are the three other farmers from the village who committed suicide.


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