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GOVERNMENT OF INDIA
Ministry of: Agriculture and Farmers Welfare
RAJYA SABHA UNSTARRED QUESTION NO 661 TO BE ANSWERED ON 04.12.2015 Suicide by farmers in Karnataka
661. Shri Rajeev Chandrasekhar Will the Minister of AGRICULTURE AND FARMERS WELFARE be pleased to state:-(a) the total number of farmers who committed suicide in Karnataka during last three months, month-wise;(b) whether Government has assessed/ has been apprised by the State Government, the reasons for this alarming rise in farmers'' suicide cases;(c) if so, the details thereof and the measures taken by the Central Government in this regard; and(d) whether Government is considering to announce any immediate relief measures like special packages/debt waiver etc. for the debt ridden farmers of Karnataka, if so, the details thereof ?
ANSWER MINISTER OF STATE IN THE MINISTRY OF AGRICULTURE AND FARMERS WELFARE (SHRI MOHANBHAI KUNDARIA)(a): The Govt. of Karnataka has reported that the number of farmers’ suicides in the State during the last three months are as under:- Month / Year No. of Suicides August, 2015 217 September, 2015 143 October, 2015 206(b): The Govt. of Karnataka has reported debt as the main reason for farmers'' suicides. Other reasons reported by the State Govt. include social conditions, lack of self confidence etc.(c): The Government of Karnataka has reported that it has taken the following measures:-(i) A sum of Rs. 5 lakh as relief is provided to each of the deceased families. This is the upward revision made effective from 1.4.2015 as against Rs. 1 lakh that was the norm earlier.(ii) The Children of the deceased will get free education including hostel facilities uptopost graduation level.Contd..2/--2- (iii) Decided to waive-off interest overdue on short, medium and long term loans borrowed for agriculture and allied activities from co-operative institutions.(iv) The recovery of installments due from 2015-16 on medium and long-term loans borrowed for agriculture and allied activities, has been postponed by one year.The Government believes, that farmers welfare will improve if there is increase in net income from the farms. With this end in view, the approach is to reduce cost of cultivation, enable higher yield per unit and realize remunerative prices. Some of the important new initiatives in this context are :(i) Soil Health Card (SHC) scheme by which the farmers can know the exact nutrient level available in their soils which will ensure judicious use of fertiliser application and save money. The balanced use of fertiliser will also enhance productivity and ensure higher returns to the farmers.(ii) Neem Coated Urea is being promoted to regulate urea use, enhance its availability to the crop and cut on cost. The entire quantity of domestically manufactured urea is now neem coated.(iii) ParampragatKrishiVikasYojana (PKVY) is being implemented with a view to promoting organic farming in the country. This will improve soil health and organic matter content and increase net income of the farmer so as to realise premium prices.(iv) The Pradhan MantriKrishiSinchaiYojana (PMKSY) is another innovative scheme to expand cultivated area with assured irrigation, reduce wastage of water and improve water use efficiency.(v) The Government is also implementing several Centrally Sponsored Schemes - National Food Security Mission (NFSM); Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture (MIDH); National Mission on Oilseeds &Oilpalm (NMOOP); National Mission for Sustainable Agriculture (NMSA); National Mission on Agricultural Extension & Technology (NMAET); National Crop Insurance Programme (NCIP); Unified National Agriculture Markets; and RashtriyaKrishiVikasYojana (RKVY).(vi) The Government undertakes procurement of wheat and paddy under its ‘MSP operations’. In addition, Government implements Market Intervention Scheme (MIS) for procurement of agricultural and horticultural commodities not covered under the Minimum Price Support Scheme on the request of State/UT Government. The MIS is implemented in order to protect the growers of these commodities from making distress sale in the event of bumper crop when the prices tend to fall below the economic level/cost of production. Losses, if any, incurred by the procuring agencies are shared by the Central Government and the concerned State Government on 50:50 basis (75:25 in case of North-Eastern States). Profit, if any, earned by the procuring agencies is retained by them.(d): The Government believes that its comprehensive interventions address the concerns from production to marketing stages including enhanced credit availability which will take care of the situation.