I came across a very depressing report in today’s newspaper about the continuing farm suicides among cotton farmers in the Vidarbha region of Maharashtra. Please click this link to read the article written by Meena Menon of The Hindu.
The cotton plant . . .
Photo: Stock.XCHNG/Fernanado Weberich taken from www.sciencemuseum.org.uk
Have farm suicides become so common in India that we no longer take note of them? Is the terrible news of dozens of farmers ending their own lives so common these days that newspapers no longer think it is “news”? Have we become so callous to the plight of our own countrymen (and women) who are less fortunate than us? Or do we think that the global “free market”, which is primarily responsible for all the mess, will stop farmers from drinking pesticides that are useless against pests but are sufficiently toxic to kill a human?
Why do we bury our heads in the sand like ostriches and pretend that all is well with our country? Why do we not take note of the suffering of the less fortunate people who live only a few hundred kilometres (maybe even less) away from our booming cities? Have we given up on our farmers who provide us with food? Have we left them to face the Lord of Death by themselves without extending a helping hand to them, if not because they are our fellow citizens, then atleast because they are fellow human beings?
When will the suffering end?
WHEN will the suicides STOP?
I will use my favourite quote from Rabindranath Tagore:
“Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake!”