Union Agriculture minister sees love affairs behind farmers’ suicides in India
New Delhi: Dowry, love
affairs and impotency were among the reasons for the suicidal death of over 1,400
farmers in India this year, claims Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh.
In a written reply to a
question as to what caused the death of so many farmers in the country the minister
told the Rajya Sabha of Friday, “According to the National Crime Records
Bureau, causes of (farmer) suicides include family problems, illness, drugs, dowry,
love affairs and impotency.”
The minister's reply,
however, did not rule out debt as one of the reasons. The remarks on suicide by
over 1,400 farmers in the last one year, by the government’s own admission, are
bound to provide fresh fodder to a belligerent opposition, which has been
targeting the Narendra Modi government on the controversial land bill, dubbed
as “anti-farmer and anti-poor.”
Over 5,000 farmers
committed suicide in 2014
A total of 5,650
farmers committed suicide in 2014, with the maximum deaths reported from
Maharashtra, Telangana and Chhattisgarh, official data revealed.
According to “Accidental
Deaths and Suicides in India 2014” report released by the bureau, of the 5,650
farmers who committed suicide, 5,178 were men and 472 were women. “The highest
incidents of 2,568 suicides of farmers were in Maharashtra (45.5 per cent),
followed by 898 suicides in Telangana (15.9 per cent) and 826 in Madhya Pradesh
(14.6 per cent),” the data revealed.
“Telangana reported the
maximum cases of female farmers’ suicides at 31.1 per cent followed closely by
Madhya Pradesh (29.2 per cent), and Maharashtra (14.1 per cent),” it added.
and family problems were major causes behind the suicides, accounting for 20.6
per cent and 20.1 per cent of the deaths respectively. Other causes included
crop failure (16.8 per cent) and illness (13.2 per cent).
The report revealed
that 65.75 per cent of the farmers who committed suicide were in the age group
of 30 to 60. In all, 59 were below 18 years of age. Even though 15 people took
their lives every hour in 2014, the overall suicide figures witnessed a drop
from 1,34,799 in 2013 to 1,31,666 in 2014, the NCRB said.
Here again, Maharashtra
reported the maximum suicides (16,307), followed closely by Tamil Nadu (16,122)
and West Bengal (14,310). In addition, Bhopal reported a significant increase
in the number of suicides - from 384 in 2013 to 1,064 in 2014, an increase of
177 per cent, while suicides declined by 78.7 per cent in Kanpur - from 648 in
2013 to 138 in 2014. (With inputs from agencies)