With the latest farmer suicide, the death toll due to agrarian crisis in the state has reached 15, opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala said.

Another farmer suicide in Kerala opposition blames govt over agrarian distressimage for representation only
news Farmer suicide Friday, March 29, 2019 - 19:00

The recent death of a 55-year-old farmer from Wayanad has thrown light, once again, on the continuing agrarian crisis in Kerala. On Thursday, VB Krishnakumar, a marginal farmer from Annapara near Thrissilery in Wayanad was found dead in the back of his house. The suspected reason for Krishnakumar’s suicide is the repayment of loans he had taken for farming, according to sources. 

“He was found by his relatives at around 7:45 or 8 am on Thursday morning. His brother says that the main reason he killed himself was mounting debt,” a source who spoke to the farmer’s kin told TNM. 

Krishnakumar had taken a loan of Rs 3-and-a-half lakh from the Thrissilery Service Cooperative Bank and over Rs 2 lakh from friends and private money lenders. The loans were reportedly taken for cultivation on the 2-and-a-half acre farmland that he owned. 

However, as he suffered crop loss, he was unable to repay the debt which was due. 

“Although there is not confirmation on the reason for his death, his brother stated that the reason for Krishnakumar to end his life was his inability to pay the debt,” the source added. 

A case has been registered in the Thirunelly police station. The deceased farmer’s autopsy was conducted in the Mananthavady district hospital. 

Following this incident, opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala highlighted the growing agrarian crisis witnessed by the state and blamed the ruling LDF government of inaction. 

According to reports, Chennithala stated that the toll of farmer deaths due to non-repayment of loans has now hit 15. Chennithala even questioned why the government did not issue the order for extension of moratorium on loans, due to which bank officials are threatening farmers to repay their loans. 

Earlier this month, a 45-year-old farmer from Anjukunnu near Wayanad also saw his house and adjoining land being attached by the bank for non-repayment of a loan of Rs 14 lakh he had taken in 2015. Following protests by farmer unions, the house (which was locked by bank officials) was broken open and the family was re-instated. 

(Suicide helpline numbers: Maithri helpline - 0484-2540530, Chaithram helpline: 0484-2361161) 

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