News.com.au (Link) (April 17, 2009)
DEBT related to crop failures has driven more than 1500 farmers in the Indian state of Chattisgarh to commit suicide. The Press Association reports that the farmers committed suicide because they had no way to pay crippling debts.
“(Money-lenders) lure farmers to take money but when the crops fail, they are left with no option other than death," Organic Farming Association of India spokesman Bharatendu Prakash told The Press Association.
Many people depend on seasonal crops in the agricultural state, but this year has seen Chattisgarh hit by falling water levels and droughts. “Only God can save the ones who do not have a bore well," one resident said.
The Indian Government recently waivered $15 billion worth of farmer loans, but it had no effect on those who were forced into private arrangements with local money-lenders. More than 10,000 of India’s farmers have killed themselves in the past decade.
And who will replace these farmers I wonder? This seems like a spiral to further food problems in addition to the drought.