Farmer's Suicide in India

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  • 1. FARMERS’ SUICIDES IN INDIA March 14, 2014
  • 2. GROUP MEMBERS • Harsh Abhishek 120123017 h.abhishek • Abhinav Anand 120104001 abhinav2012 • Amit Kumar Meena 120104006 amit.meena • Ankit Kumar 120104008 ankit.kumar2012 • Rishabh Daga 120104058 d.rishabh • Sandeep 120104062 sandeep2012 • Kumar Deepak 120103093 deepak12 • Harish Choudhary 120103091 c.harish • K A Aneez 120103035 ka.aneez
  • 3. WHO IS A FARMER ? • A farmer (also called an agriculturer) is a person engaged in agriculture, raising living organisms for food or raw materials (doing some combination of raising field crops, orchards, vineyards, poultry, or other livestock). • A farmer might own the farmed land or might work as a labourer on land owned by others. • In advanced economies, a farmer is usually a farm owner, while employees of the farm are known as farm workers, or farmhands.
  • 4. WHAT IS SUICIDE ? • The word Suicide originates from Latin word ‘suicidium’, which originates from ’sui caedere’, which means ‘to kill oneself’. • Suicide is the act of intentionally causing one's own death. • Common methods include: hanging, pesticide poisoning, and firearms.
  • 5. REASONS FOR SUICIDE • Suicide is often committed out of despair, the cause of which is frequently attributed to a mental disorder such as depression, alcoholism, rape or drug abuse. • Stress factors such as financial difficulties or troubles with interpersonal relationships often play a role. • Views on suicide have been influenced by broad existential themes such as religion, honor, and the meaning of life.
  • 6. WHY SHOULD WE TALK ABOUT FARMERS’ SUICIDES • Agriculture sector has a pivotal role in Indian economy. • The share of agriculture sector in G.D.P. of India was 44.0% during 1973-74 . • Agriculture provides the principal means of livelihood for over 60 percent of India's population. • In Indian planning agriculture sector ignored except in a few five years plan.
  • 7. HISTORY • In the 1990s the Govt. officials denied a large number of suicides, but as more and more information came to light the government began to accept that farmers in India were under considerable stress 15% farmers killed themselves and more than 25000 farmers consumed pesticides and killed themselves because of a combination of high farming costs (exorbitantly priced hybrid (so-called high yielding) seeds and pesticides sold by multinationals and a lack of a good price for their produce, partly due to imports.
  • 8. FARMERS’ SUICIDE STATISTICS • On an average 38 farmers commit suicide everyday in India, one Indian farmer commits suicide every 32 minutes between 1997 and 2005 and since 2012, this has become one suicide every 30 minutes. • 1803 women farmers committed suicide in 2012. • 13754 farmers committed suicide in the country in 2012. • Almost 75 per cent of farmer suicides have occurred amongst the small and medium farmers. • Indebtedness was the reason behind the suicide of 93% farmers.
  • 9. COMMON FEATURES IN MAJORITY OF SUICIDES • 91-94 % of suicides are by family heads. • 91-97 % of those who committed suicide are males. • 84 to 89 percent are married. • 86.5 percent of farmers who took their own lives were financially indebted.
  • 10. REASONS FOR FARMERS’ SUICIDE IN INDIA
  • 11. GENERAL VIEW indebtedness, 93%, 24% economic downfall, 74%, 19% conflict in family, 55%, 14% crop failure, 41%, 11% dent in social status, 36%, 10% daughter/sister's marriage, 34%, 9% addiction, 28%, 7% health promblems, 21%, 6%
  • 12. DROUGHT • The most immediate consequence of drought is a fall in crop production, due to inadequate and poorly distributed rainfall. Farmers are faced with harvests that are too small to both feed their families, fodder supplies from crop residues to feed their livestock and fulfill their other commitments forcing them to drastic measures. The drastic measures can include changing jobs or suicides.
  • 13. MONSOONS • Farmers in India over dependence on the monsoons. • There is regular break down in the meteorological cycle of rainfall,. • In India, 93% of area fall under dry land farming, which means totally dependent on the rainfall as irrigation systems are scarce, not equally spread and are not efficient • Sometimes more than normal rains causes flood which also destroys the crop.
  • 14. LACK OF PROPER IRRIGATION • Indian farmers are heavily dependent on monsoons,. They don’t have any source for proper irrigation farming. Irrigation farming is when crops are grown with the help of irrigation systems by supplying water to land through rivers, reservoirs, tanks, and wells. • 58% of farmers having committed suicides had absolutely no irrigation facilities.
  • 15. GROUNDWATER • Due to overdependence on groundwater for all purposes domestic or industrial and with no law against it in India, ground water table is decreasing at an alarming rate. Many farmers due to lack of proper irrigation systems, use tube wells and are now facing problems due to it.
  • 16. LACK OF POWER SUPPLY • Many tasks related to agriculture are power/electric dependent. • Costly or no electricity supply proves to a significant problem.
  • 17. EXPENSIVE TECHNOLOGIES • New technologies are better but they come with a big price tags, which are either too costly to be bought or they get their money through loans which again push them into debt.
  • 18. MISGUIDED POLICIES • Government only help a fraction of farmers. • The waiver given by government helps only if the loan has been taken from a government- backed institution, but most farmers in India borrow from moneylenders at the start of the sowing season to buy seeds and other ingredients. • Farmers' demands were not taken into count while preparing the relief package. Neither were civil society organizations, local government bodies, panchayats etc consulted.
  • 19. GIRL CHILD • Dowry is still present in many parts of India. • Dowry creates financial pressure on the family head.
  • 20. GREEN REVOLUTION
  • 21. INDEBTEDNESS • Indebtedness was the reason behind the suicide of 93% farmers. • Out of 17.64 Lakh farmers only (25.3%) farmers could avail institutional finance in 2005-06. • Private money lenders charge high interest rates between 48-60% p.a. • Higher rate of interest in the cooperative credit system e.g. up to 12.5% to 14% till last year. • cooperative sector brought down their interest rates to 7%, even then the farmers are taking loans from the private individuals.
  • 22. REASONS FOR INDEBTEDNESS Indebtedness Increasing cost of agriculture inputs Repeated crop loss Increasing dependence on money lenders at high rates of interest. Withdrawal of government support Reduced price of agriculture produces
  • 23. CROP FAILURE • There are many different reasons for crop failure Late Monsoon Heavy Monsoon Pests, Insects Natural Calamity Personal Enmity Climate Change Drought
  • 24. OTHERS • Social Status • Loan Waiver Policy • Neutral seeds • Rising Costs of Cultivation • Uncertainty of agricultural enterprise in India • Media’s Move
  • 25. IMPACT OF SUICIDES • Suicides leads to loss of sole bread winner in the family. • Widows burdened with the new responsibility as the sole breadwinner. • It causes a lot of psychological distress to family. • There is increased social stigma. • Impact on children’s education. • Other family members attempting suicides. • Children sometimes lose both parents to suicide, forcing their education to a halt, especially if they have to work in order to provide for their needs. • Farms are confiscated due to inability to pay back high interest loans. There is also loss of assets i.e. domestic animals and agriculture implements. • The families moves from farm labor to permanent labor. • This also leads to child labor and detoriation of physical health
  • 26. PREVENTIVE MEASURES 1. Agriculture extension services . 2. PROVIDE FINANCIAL LITERACY ( HOW TO USE CREDIT, WORK OUT ON COST-BENEFIT ANALYSIS OF INVESTMENT, RISK COPING MECHANISM I.E., INSURANCE – CROP & LIFE, INCREASING SAVINGS). 3. BUILDING SOCIAL SYSTEMS & STRENGTHENING THEM ( FARMER’S GROUPS EXPOSURE TO DIFFERENT COPING MECHANISMS, BEST AGRICULTURE PRACTICES). 4. FOCUS ON CREATING ALTERNATE LIVELIHOODS. 5. ENCOURAGE MULTIPLE CROPPING. 6. GENERATE AWARENESS ON PESTICIDE USAGE. 7. PROVIDE TIMELY GOVERNMENT INPUT SUBSIDY TO THE FARMERS. 8. PROVIDE QUALITY OF SEEDS. 9. GOVERNMENT IN ADVANCE SHOULD STATE THE PREMIUM PRICE FOR THE CROPS.
  • 27. REHABILITATIVE MEASURES • Counselling can be provided to the farmer’s family • The families can be helped to gain benefits of various government schemes. • Dependent family members can be provided with guidance to other livelihood alternatives(non farm employment) and • Seed support, manure, tank silt (red soils) or cost of cultivation can be provided. • Interest free loan and free health insurance services are also required.
  • 28. WHAT GOVERNMENT CAN DO? Immediate Measures • Immediate compensation for crop failure • Remunerative prices, direct procurement from farmers • Modify export/import policies and tariffs in favour of Indian farmers • Provide ex-gratia and loan repayment support for all families of farmer suicides in time-bound manner
  • 29. WHAT GOVERNMENT CAN DO? Addressing Root Causes • Price Compensation system for all food crops: when MSPs or market prices are less than Target Price (Cost of Cultivation + 50%), the difference should be paid directly to farmers • Guarantee minimum living incomes to all farmers • Promote sustainable agriculture which reduces cost of cultivation and crop risk • Comprehensive rainfed agriculture mission based on diverse cropping systems, protective irrigation and livestock systems
  • 30. WHAT GOVERNMENT CAN DO? Addressing Root Causes (contd) • Bank credit to all farmers with adequate scale of finance • Effective crop insurance to cover all crops and all farmers • Inclusion of tenant farmers in all support systems
  • 31. WHAT GOVERNMENT CAN DO? Parliamentarians should demonstrate their serious intent of addressing agrarian crisis • Day-long joint session of Assembly/Parliament to discuss farmer suicides and agrarian crisis • Constitute a Parliamentarians’/MLAs’ Forum on Agrarian Distress to address the causes of the crisis