Farmers’ suicide up by 40 pc due to drought in 2015; Maharashtra worst-hit
India has been witnessing an alarming rise in farmer suicide cases. According to a report, in 2014, 5,650 farmers committed suicide whereas in 2015, the figure crossed 8,000 mark -- showing a 40 per cent rise.
Maharashtra, which has been hit by drought over the past few years, continues to witness the highest number of farmer suicides, Indian Express reported. The state saw an 18 per cent jump in such cases. While in 2014, 2568 farmers committed suicide, in 2015 the number was recorded at 3,030.
The Marathwada region in the state battled one of the worst droughts in last three years. Alone in the Marathwada, in the first four months of 2016, the region recorded more than 400 suicides.
Out of eight districts, five were the worst affected, namely Beed, Jalna, Parbhani, Nanded and Osmanabad. Out of the 75 medium dams in the region, 54 were completely dried up.
In 2015, the total number of suicides in Marathwada stood at 1,130, three suicides a day.
The dependence of farmers on water-guzzling cash crops such as sugarcane has been cited as one of the reasons for the distress.
Telangana, which came in at second place in 2015, recorded over 1,350 farmer suicides, up from 898 in 2014. In Karnataka, the suicide cases of farmers jumped from 321 in 2014 to more than 1,300 in 2015.
Central Indian states Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh saw more than 100 farmer suicides in 2015, with northeaster states like Bihar, Jharkhand, West Bengal recording no such cases.
The country witnessed three straight years of severe drought in 2012, 2014 and 2015 with Maharashtra being the worst-hit.
Report also said that the agrarian crisis was worsened due to deficient rain continuing in 2015 as farmers suffering from the previous drought could not recover.
For decades farmers have been committing suicide and the problem does not appear to be getting any better. In fact, it is worsening with each passing day despite the government’s efforts to address the problem.
Meanwhile, with a normal Monsoon Season this year, the government hopes the number of farmer suicides will come down this year.