ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Agriculture is Injurious to Health

Observations from Marathwada

Farmers in India could be forgiven for assuming that bureaucrats, political parties and their representatives want them to quit agriculture. In fact, without actually announcing that agriculture in any form is injurious to health and only death can end the agony of the disease, these sections do their best to communicate this message subtly.

A large number of farmers suffer due to their insistence on carrying on farming and find solace, it seems, only by committing suicide. Between 1995 and 2014, 2,96,438 people across India (60,365 from Maharashtra itself) took to this path. Farmers from Maharashtras drought-prone Marathwada region have been committing suicide since 2010 but the numbers have gone up from 2014 onwards. In 2015 nearly 1,200 farmers killed themselves and in the first 90 days of 2016, 273 had ended their lives in a bid to get relief from severe distress.

Parched and dry water bed at Latur, Maharashtra. Courtesy: Manoj Aakhade. 

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