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Friday, 9 December 2016

The curse of Starvation Death and Farmers Suicide

Curse of starvation and reasons for farmers suicide

Every day we come across reports about deaths due to starvation as well as suicide by the farmers across the country . Though the country witnessed the green revolution resulting in excess food production , a large number of people in India are still suffering from hunger and farmers who are the backbone of the country are  undergoing traumatizing experience in the process of agricultural activities leading to ending their lives . All these are happening despite concerted efforts by the agricultural scientists and food experts to avert the evil .
If we look into the rate of farmers suicide in the country , on an average 47 farmers have committed suicide every single day in the past one and half decade , in India . Maharashtra , Karnataka , Andhra Pradesh are leading in respect of farmer's suicide in the country.

The farmers do not end their lives just because of any family feud or any incurable diseases , they are taking this extreme step of ending their lives leaving their dependents at lurch , purely because of financial distress , i.e unable to bear the burnt loans they have taken for agricultural activities.

The policies of the successive governments have not come to the rescue of the peasants who grow everything for sustaining the nation . Unlike industries , the farmers do not get support prices for their produces . They have to rely on the middlemen and get only a meager amount for their hard work , finally they end up caught in the big net of loans and when the loans grow into huge burden , they finally decide to commit suicide.

While lack of proper marketing infrastructure which enables the peasants to get reasonable price for their produces is one of the reasons , the absence of proper financial arrangement for them from the government is another cause for the growing distress among the farming folk of the country . It is a well known fact that majority of the poor people including farmers have to depend on private money lenders for their loan who generally charge high rate of interests leading to farmer's inability to repay it and losing their land other means of livelihood.

While on the one hand farmers who produces and supply food grains to the country are reeling under unending problems , the country is witnessing the "problem of plenty" amid  numerous deaths due to starvation. It is estimated that on an average, every 4 seconds a person dies due to starvation or hunger related problems and 21,000 people die everyday ., A number mothers die due to Anemia which is due to lack of nutrition , like wise thousands of children die everyday due to malnutrition . Deaths due to starvation has become very common in backward states like  Bihar , Kalahandhi is the best example for this where are even forced to eat mud bread  to satisfy their hunger.
At this time it is right to quote Mahatma Gandhi's quote " Leaving people to suffer from starvation is also a form of terrorism". Then what is the cause for these , is there not enough food grains to feed all the mouths in the country , the obvious answer is yes , though there has been increase in the production of food grains , we still are unable to sustain lives of the growing population. If we look into the current situation , we can observe that the population is increasing inversely to the agricultural production , even though we are producing enough food grains to feed all the people , about 120 to 160 lakh tonnes of the grains are being  spoiled every year due to lack of proper storing facilities. 

The Supreme court of India has suggested to the govt of India to distribute the food grains to the poor instead of storing them so that the food is not wasted and eaten by rodents , however the govt has tried taken an appropriate measure in this direction . The  FOOD SECURITY BILL which is ought ensure the right to food of the people by providing enough grains to people . According to renowned Agriculture Scientist Dr. M.S. Swaminathan , The National Food Security Bill is the last to convert Gandhiji's vision of hunger free India into reality . Mahatma Gandhi's desire was that the "God of Bread should be present in every hut in India". In this context , let us all hope that the administrators awake to the need of hour and strive to put an end to the curse of hunger and farmer's suicides.