Eight more Vidarbha farmers’ suicides in last 72 hrs.

By Pervez Bari, TwoCircles.net 
Bhopal, June 11: In the last 72 hours eight more farmers' suicides were reported in the Vidarbha region of western Indian state of Maharashtra due to agrarian crisis taling the total toll mark to around 450 since January this year.
The local media reported that due credit crisis all local bankers have stopped giving fresh crop loans to cotton farmers as they have failed to repay old crop loans due to crop failure and poor price for raw cotton in open market, the Nagpur-based Vidarbha Jan Andolan Samiti, (VJAS), said in a release.
Those who ended their lives include: Durgasingh Bhoju Chawhan of Kohala, Premdas Mahadev Pawar of Tiwsa, Laxman Yashavant Kupre of Borisinha Tq., Diwakar Bapurao Kadu of Dongargao Tq. Wani, Ramdas Bythu Soyam of Pimpari Durg village (all five in Yavatmal Distt.), Muralidhar Pandurang Kadu of Bopapur in Amaravati Distt, Damodar Vishram Raut of Ganeshpur village in Washim Distt. and Prabhakar Balkrishnna Bhalkar of village Bhankheda in Wardha Distt.
The VJAS release said that Yavatmal District has reported six suicides in last 72 hours and more than 1000 farm suicide in last three years where Indian President of India Dr. A. P. J. Abdul Kalam is visiting on June 15 to attend a private function of The Congress member of Parliament Vijay Darda. Vidarbha farmers are expecting relief announcement at the time of Indian
President to Vidarbha.
In fact till date Indian President Dr. Abdul Kalam  has not shown any concern over these farmers' suicides. Since January this year around 450 farmers' suicides have already been reported as against 1442 farmers' suicides in 2006 as per Maharashtra Government official record. Though VJAS has sent daily e-mail of updates of farmers' suicides to the President Dr. Abdul Kalam but his office failed to acknowledge even a single e-mail, the VJAS release added.
The release pointed out that the main cause of Vidarbha agrarian crisis is increase in input cost of cultivation and collapse of raw cotton prices.
Meanwhile, it may be recalled here that on July 1 last year Indian Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh had visited Vidarbha and officially endorsed that Vidarbha farmers' suicide is a national problem and released Rs.3750/- crore relief package for the debt trap distressed Vidarbha cotton farmers.
But since June 2005 local and international media started reporting issue of farmers' suicides particularly of Vidarbha cotton farmers it was expected that President of India will draw the serious concern over these issues and ask the Indian Government to look into the matter but he failed to do so.
It was high time when CPI general secretary A.B.Bardhan openly criticised the Indian President for his apathy towards the Vidarbha farmers' suicides six month back but the Indian president failed respond over this serious issue after this criticism too.
Now, according to Kishor Tiwari, president of VJAS, they have been informed that President's office is arranging a meeting of Indian President Dr. Abdul Kalam with farmers' widows of Vidarbha provided the local administration permits them. Earlier, it was decided that to protest over continuous apathy of the President black flags would be shown by the thousands of widows of farmers who committed suicide in this agrarian crisis since 2005, he informed .  
In Vidarbha since June 2005 daily 3 or 4 cotton farmers are committing suicides but the Indian govt. failed to address this  serious issue of farm crisis. The main demands of cotton farmers of overdue pending loan waiver and restoration of cotton procurement price to Rs.3500 per quintal has been completely ignored hence farm suicide are nit being slow down, Tiwari added. ([email protected])