Wednesday, Oct 22, 2014

Farmers suicide: Government yet to implement panel suggestions

 While the survey comprised figures till 2008 in Bathinda and Mansa — where around 3,000 farmers committed suicide — in the remaining districts, the figures were till 2010. While the survey comprised figures till 2008 in Bathinda and Mansa — where around 3,000 farmers committed suicide — in the remaining districts, the figures were till 2010.
Written by Raakhi Jagga | Ludhiana | Posted: May 14, 2014 11:42 am | Updated: May 14, 2014 11:52 am

While 10 debt-ridden farmers have committed suicide in the last 40 days in Punjab, the recommendations of a panel set up by the state in 2011 to look into such cases are yet to be implemented. This, when the government plans to set up a new panel to probe such cases. As per a survey conducted by three Punjab universities in early 2010, 6,926 farmers had committed suicide in the state. While the survey comprised figures till 2008 in Bathinda and Mansa — where around 3,000 farmers committed suicide — in the remaining districts, the figures were till 2010. Though the Punjab cabinet, in March 2009, had decided to pay a compensation of Rs 2 lakh for the family of farmer who committed suicide, till date, 2,240 such cases are pending. A few farmers were given compensation in February, after The Indian Express did a series of stories on unpaid compensation. Shingara Singh Mann, the Bathinda unit president of Bharti Kisan Union (Ugrahan), said: “The farmers are not being paid compensation because the government claims that they did not commit suicide because of debt. In most cases, farmers have sold their land to pay the debt. With no means to earn their livelihood, the farmers committed suicide. The government has never reviewed their cases. How will a fresh panel now decide about suicide cases?” Sukhdev Singh Kokri, Punjab president of union, added: “In a December 2011 meeting, the government had stated that it will pay compensation to all. Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal was presented in the meeting. But nothing has been done till now.”

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