In which direction Indian politics is going on, where farmers are committing suicide

Mrs Rakhi Sharma By Mrs Rakhi Sharma, 25th Oct 2012 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
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The Indian politics need correction in planning future strategies to reduce farm suicides. Farmers and the people under certain levels are compelled to commit suicide due to inflation and high input and crop failure at farm level.

In which direction Indian politics is going on, where farmers are committing suicide

Rakhi Sharma and Dr Awadhesh Kishore*

Institute for Development of Technology for Rural Advancement, Mathura INDIA
*Sarvoday Mahavidyalaya, Chaumuhan-281406, Mathura INDIA


India, Farmers, Suicide, Politics

This is to think critically that in which direction Indian politics is going. India do not need such direction where Indian politics is going. India is agriculture based economy. The farmer should be emphasized in the nation but the data of farm suicides in the country since 1997-2010 is reflecting a picture that the farmers in India are not having paid proper attention of the government and the policy makers. It is surprising that Farmers in India was the centre of considerable concerns in the 1990s. He is producing food, clothes and so many other products, but unfortunately he is most neglected person, and is not being care in the country. Thus, after being harassed and stressed from everywhere, he is bound to commit suicide in a country so called democratic ‘India Republic’.

It is urged to the Government of India to leave the other issues, which are not more important, set aside and make the policies in such a way on priority basis so that the producers of food can nourish them along-with their families. It is true that the government of India is trying to underplay the cases of farmer deaths and intellectual supporters of the farmers. But it must be taken seriously that committing suicide is not a simple game to play on a cricket ground but the Annadata (producer of grains) is living in serious stress and when the stress is increased further to shape itself overstress the Annadata finds himself bound to commit suicide.

It is the actuality to agree that the farmer is not responsible for his attempt to suicide but the whole machinery of government, ministry of Agriculture and rural welfare departments are equally accountable of each and every incidence of committing suicide by the farmer. The farmers, the soul of India, are committing suicide, in these circumstances, what the role of ministry of Agriculture is, what it is doing so. If it has yet to remain sit or sleep what the need to establish or continue this ministry or the departments. It is better to lock all those offices.

Official reports initially deprived of the farmer suicides but as more and more information in sequence came into light the government of India is now compelled to accept the facts that farmers in India were under considerable stress.

An official report itself is now agreed that more than 17,500 farmers an year killed themselves between 2002 and 2006, according to experts who have analyzed government statistics (Patel, 2007) and is increasing to the early 1990s (Meeta and Rajivlochan, 2006). Most of the suicides occurred in states of Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Kerala and Punjab (Huggler, 2004; Waldman, 2004; The Hindu, 2006; Pinglay, 2008; Associated Press, 2009). The situation is severe enough to force at least the government of Maharashtra to set up a dedicated office to deal with farmers distress.

The data available in Table is alarming that India is inviting sever calamities itself in the shape of food crisis. There is a space to have many debates since the issue is not a simple but is so emotive.

Over 5,000 farmers committed suicide in years 2005-2009 in Maharashtra, while 1,313 cases reported in Andhra Pradesh between years 2005 and 2007. In Karnataka the number stood at 1,003, since 2005-06 till August 2009. According to NCRB database number of suicides during 2005-2009 in Gujarat 387, Kerala 905, Punjab 75 and Tamil Nadu 26 (IFFRI, 2008).

In April 2009, the state of Chattisgarh reported 1,500 farmers committed suicide due to debt and crop failure More than 17,368 Indian farmers killed themselves in 2009, the worst figure for farm suicides in six years, according to data of the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) (The Hindu, 2010).

On a total basis the suicides of the farmers in India are increasing year wise year (Table; Figure 1) which is reached as high as 18221 in 2004 from 13622 in 1997. Since 1997 to till date we are losing a farmer within 30-40 minutes (Table; Figure 2). The Table and Figure 3 reports We are losing about 2 farmers in an hour.

Table: Analysis of farm suicides in India

Year Description Total suicides Minutes per suicide Suicides per hour
1997 (*) 13622 38.58 1.56
1998 (*) 16015 32.82 1.83
1999 (*) 16082 32.68 1.84
2000 (*) 16603 31.66 1.90
2001 (*) 16415 32.02 1.87
2002 (*) 17971 29.25 2.05
2003 (*) 17164 30.62 1.96
2004 (*) 18241 28.81 2.08
2005 (*) 17131 30.68 1.96
2006 (*) 17060 30.81 1.95
2007 (*) 16632 31.60 1.90
2008 (*) 16196 32.45 1.85
2009 (#) 17368 30.26 1.98
2010 (§) 15964 32.92 1.82

(*) Nagraj, (2008); (#) Sainath, (2010); (§) Sainath, (2011);


India needs politics that works in a correct direction that think about the key men or the soul of India i.e. the farmers. It should plan and implement the policies for betterment of the farmers so that the attempts of farm suicides can be decreased. An immediate action in matter is required to be taken otherwise India needs a result oriented politics not just to promising.


Associated Press, 2009. Drought, debt lead to Indian farmers' suicides. Associated Press. August 28.

Huggler, J., 2004. India acts over suicide crisis on farms". London: The Independent. Retrieved 2010-05-02.

IFFRI, 2008. Farmers’ suicides in India not due to Bt cotton: IFFRI". Mint, Nov 11.

Meeta and Rajivlochan, 2006. Farmers suicide: facts and possible policy interventions, Yashada, Pune.

Nagaraj, K. 2008. Accidental Deaths & Suicides in India. NCRB reports () for those years and extended thereafter with NCRB ADSI data from years 2006, 2007 and 2008

Patel, R. 2007. Stuffed and Starved. Portobello Books, London.

Pinglay, P., 2008. No let up in India farm suicides. BBC News, May 5.

Sainath, P. 2010. 17,368 farm suicides in 2009. The Hindu, MUMBAI, December 27, 2010.

Sainath, P. 2011. In 16 years, farm suicides cross a quarter million: P. Sainath's opinion.

The Hindu, 2006. Spate of farmers' suicides in India worrying WHO". The Hindu. Oct 15.

The Hindu, 2010. Column news. December.

Waldman, A., 2004. Debts and Drought Drive India's Farmers to Despair". New York Times. Retrieved 2010-05-02.

See also


Farmers, India, Politics, Suicide

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