The Chhattisgarh Congress has formed a seven-member committee to probe the suicide of a 37-year-old farmer, Jageshwar Singh, in Bundeli village of Korba district on Friday.
According to his wife Jam Bai, Singh consumed poison as he was under stress over his inability to repay the loan he had taken for agriculture. He was taken to a hospital but could not survive.
Singh had taken a loan of Rs 1.3 lakh from a cooperative bank and Rs 1.2 lakh from a relative for his crop last year. However, last November, his entire crop on nine acres was destroyed by elephants. In his dying declaration, Singh said he took the step as he was unable to repay the loan, and could not get compensation from the forest department.
The rules state that in such cases, the forest department should give compensation within 10 days. The forest department estimated Singh’s crop loss at just Rs 3,240 and even this amount was not handed over to him. “The compensation amount should have been given within 10 days. We will conduct an enquiry into the delay,” said Divisional Forest Officer J R Nayak.
Meanwhile, taking tough action against forest officers who failed to provide compensation to Singh, CM Raman Singh Saturday suspended Korba forest ranger C R Netam and attached Divisional Forest Officer J R Nayak and another officer R K Dubey with the Raipur office. The CM asked Bilaspur commissioner Sonmani Bora to investigate the issue. Earlier, a report sent to the CM by Korba collector had stated that Netam delayed handing over compensation despite sufficient funds at his disposal.