One farmer suicide every thirty minutes; That's my mother land.
In every 30 minutes 1 farmer is committing suicide in India. It is NCRB i.e National Crime Record Bureau‘s report. But according to the researcher s the actual number is much higher than this. NCRB does not include farm labourers and the female farmers in its list. The person whose name is in the title deed of farm land is eligible to be declared as farmer by NCRB. In India only 8% people are farmers and if we take marginal farmers in our list then it will rise up to 10%. But 53% of Indians are depending on farming. More than 2, 85,700 farmers have committed suicides in India in last 18 years. It is estimated that 2035 numbers of persons are quitting farming every day. According to Planning commission’s report numbers of agricultural labourers are increasing rapidly but the numbers of farmers are decreasing every day. That means farmers are becoming farm labourers. According to the Census report migration from villages are increasing so rapidly that within next few years cities and towns will be flooded with migrated people. Why is it that a country with so much fertile land, numerous rivers and potential farmers is failing to provide life support to its people?
1. According to the researchers after the introduction of neo liberal economic policies farmers are opting for or farmers are manipulated by agricultural giants like Monsanto to opt for BT crops, High Breeds crops and GM crops. These kinds of crops need huge irrigation, tons of costly and deadly pesticides. So the production cost of farming increases several times. Ultimately farmers start to take loans from local money lenders and then one day fails to repay the loan and then either they are committing suicides or quitting farming or becoming landless land labourers.
2. Another evil side of these kinds of High Breed seeds is that it spoils the natural biodiversity. It spoils the land fertility, water level and sustainability.
3. Another interesting feature is that most of farmers who have committed suicides are cash crop farmers. Cash crop farming is increasing every day. Multinational agricultural product manufacturers are manipulating farmers to produce cash crops like cotton, sugar cane , vanillas, coffee, roses and tulips to name a few. 1 acre of sugar cane field needs 21 million liters of water. Almost same with rose farming. This kind of farming needs very costly pesticides. Ultimately cost of production reaches sky high. Market price is not at all in favour of farmers. So the farmers are losing everything from every side.
4. Farmers who are producing food crops are at least in better condition because at the end of the day we can eat pulses, rice and wheat not cottons or vanillas.
5. According to RBI i.e Reserve Bank of India corporate sectors are more benefited by the economic policies of Government of India rather than the sons of soils. Other way you can say that farm lands are going to corporate sectors. It is not at all a good sign of economic development. Development means distribution with growth.
6. Recent reports are showing 1 out of every 3 malnourished children is from India. And most of these malnourished children are from villages. Their parents are either farm labourers or marginal farmers or dependant on farming.
This gloomy picture of India is so disturbing and so painful that we feel helpless and ashamed for our incapability to protect our farmers. Rabindra Nath Tagore was right to say that, our farmers are producing wealth but they are living with miseries.