Idukki district seems to be emerging as a graveyard for farmers. An Idukki native Varikkanikal James (52) was found hanging in Perinchamkutty plantaton on Tuesday at 10 am. The farmer had taken bank loans and failed to repay them, his family members said.
Adimali native Kunnath Surenderan (67) consumed poison last week and was shifted to Kottayam Medical College, where he died on Monday evening. Surendran had taken a loan from Adimali bank and had received a bank notice last week. After receiving the notice, the farmer was very upset, said relatives.
"Surendran had taken bank loan for the purpose of marrying off his daughters. But due to the flood, the farmlands were totally destroyed and he failed to repay the loan,” says Sudhakaran, son-in-law of Surendran.
"Surendran feared the bank would attach his property. The debt contributed to his suicide,” says Surendran’s brother-in-law Narayanan.
Surendran is survived by his wife Sarojini, five daughters and a son.
Within two months, the death toll has risen to seven.
On February 16, a Perimchamkutty native Nakkarayil Sreekumar (59) ended his life. On February 8, a Adimali Anaviratti native Kottakkallil Raju(50) was found hanging from a cocoa tree in his farmland. Just a day earlier, a Cheruthoni resident, Nellippuzayil Johny Mathai (58) had consumed poison and died.
On February 3, 58-year-old Nellippuzayil Johny Mathayi, a farmer and native of Cheruthoni in Idukki, had attempted suicide on his farmland and was rushed to the Idukki taluk hospital. Though he was shifted to the Kottayam Medical College hospital, he didn’t survive and passed away three days later.
Johny was an active farmer who had taken land for lease and planted tapioca, banana and vegetables. Like many other farmers, he had taken bank loans but failed to repay them as his crops were destroyed by wild boars which attacked his farm.
On January 28, Kunnumpurathu Sahadeven (68), a native of Vathikkudy in Idukki, committed suicide after he received a bank notice to seize his land.
A debt-ridden young farmer Santhosh (37), a native of Merigiri in Idukki, was found dead on his farmland on January 2. Santhosh too had taken a bank loan and committed suicide when he had received a bank