Odisha government Wednesday told the Assembly that 174 farmers in the state had committed suicide since the 2015 kharif season. It, however, insisted that no suicide was linked to crop loss.
Replying to a written question by BJP MLA Duryodhan Majhi, Agriculture Minister Pradeep Maharathy said not a single farmer committed suicide due to crop failure or failure to repay loan. Maharathy claimed that the suicides were due to causes like illness, heart attack, mental disturbance, drug addiction and family quarrel.
Out of 174 deaths, Bargarh district accounted for the maximum 26 deaths. BJP’s Bargarh MLA Pradip Purohit was quick to slam the state government, calling its stand on farmer suicides “unfortunate”.