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Sunday, 22 January 2012

CHIEF MINISTER MAMATA BANERJEE TROD THE TRUTH – FARMER'S SUICIDE

CHIEF MINISTER MAMATA BANERJEE TROD
THE TRUTH – FARMER'S SUICIDE
 
                 Debt-ridden farmer’s suicide
unabated in West Bengal – Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee trod the truth to
put-aside the egregious violation of human rights.          
                 Man-made crisis, rather to say
Government of West Bengal led by Mamata Banerjee made crisis, created in
agricultural sector in West Bengal with ulterior motive and for this reason
farmers of West Bengal killing themselves mostly, each and every day, as they
are unable to bear the huge debts which have been taken for the production of
crops. 
                   It is the system/mechanism
of the Government of West Bengal to procure the agricultural crops by engaging
the Government Agencies such as BENFED, CONFED, ECSC (Essential Commidities
Supply Corporation) and credit societies (about 26,500 PACCS – Primary
Agriculture Credit Co-operative Societies) and Rice Mills.  
 
                  With the aim to give full
opportunities to the middle-men to squeeze the peasants of West Bengal as far
as possible, this Government almost inactivated the BENFED, CONFED, ECSC and PACCS.
IT IS A MAN MADE/ GOVERNMENT MADE CRISIS IN AGRICULTURAL SECTOR OF WEST BENGAL. 
               It is the rumour that the
leaders and party workers of Trinomul Congress Party are collecting crores of
Rupees from the middle-men. Investigation should be made on this rumour. 
 
               Out of about 26,500 PACCS,
Government of West Bengal has put into service only 500 PACCS to procure crops
from whole of West Bengal. BENFED and CONFED have lack of funds to procure the
targeted crops – actually presence of these agencies is nothing but sign-board.
To meet procurement target, the Government of West Bengal should allot around
Rs.840/- crore, part of which will be borne by the FCI (Food Corporation of
India) but only Rs.60/- crore has been allotted so far. Rice Mills are not
available everywhere and many of the places Rice Mills are far away from the
residence of the farmers.
 
STATEMENT
OF CHIEF MINISTER MAMATA BANERJEE
                Most of the Newspapers in West
Bengal are supporting the activities of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee by all
means but the fact of the debt ridden farmer’s suicide cases are also appearing
in these newspapers. According to these Newspapers, Mamata Banerjee in a
meeting on 19th January 2012, Thursday (at Netaji Indor Stadium, Kolkata to the Trinomul Congress Party
workers and leaders - Panchayati Raj Convention) denied the fact that farmers are
committing suicide because they aren’t getting value for their produce and she
said –

              “NOT A SINGLE FARMER DIED DUE TO
IT, THE DEATHS OF 12 PERSONS WERE DUE TO PERSONAL DEBTS RUNNING INTO CRORES,” 
             “THE CULTIVATORS WHO HAD KILLED
THEMSELVES RECENTLY WERE EITHER ALCHOLIC OR AILING,” 
              “THE SUICIDES WERE BECAUSE OF
PERSONAL REASONS - THERE WERE EITHER AILING OR ALCOHOLIC - THEY COULDN’T REPAY
THEIR LOANS.”

                Mamata Banerjee also pointed
out that some farmers had taken “crores” in loans. IS IT POSSIBLE THAT A
SMALL/MERGINAL/MIDDLE FARMER HAS TAKEN CRORES OF RUPEES AS LOAN? From the
statement on 19th January 2012 – it is clear that Mamata Banerjee
had submitted concocted/false, fictitious stories to put-aside the egregious
violation of human rights for her activities.  

THE
FACT
                  But according to Newspapers, on
the same day i.e. on 19th January, 2012, Thursday, a debt-ridden
farmer of Burdwan district, Galsi resident Sushanta Ghosh,35, committed suicide
by drinking pesticide at his home. His father said – his son used to cultivate
paddy on eight bighas, had failed to get the right price for paddy – my son had
failed to repay debts amounting to Rs.1.45 lakh accrued over the past three
years. He had been sold some of his wife’s jewellery – he was depressed. Nephew
of Sushanta Ghosh said – uncle was forced to sell two-and-a-half quintals of
his 40-quintal produce to middlemen after the local rice mills refused to buy
his paddy.     
                       On 17th January 2012, Tuesday, a small farmer Ganesh Durlav, 45, of Haripal, village
Bandipur, in Hooghly district drank pesticide (Thimet). Wife of Ganesh Durlav
said - her husband has 5 Kottah own land and besides this land he cultivated
paddy and potato in a two bighas of land as share-cropper – he has taken a loan
of Rs.20,000/- from Credit society and money-lender.    
              One of the pro-Mamata Banerjee
Newspaper (in Bengali language) mentioned – 
              Cost of production of 40 kg of
rice is Rs.550/- but the farmers are getting sell price Rs.450/- and loss is
Rs.100/- per 40 kg of rice.
             This statement of this Newspaper
is not correct as Government rate is Rs.1,080/- per quintal. But the rate is
Rs.1125/- per quintal if the farmer is able to sell paddy Rs.450/- per 40 kg.
The farmer is getting less than Rs.450/- according to the Government Rate. 
 
              THE FARMERS are, in distress
sell, forced to sell to the middle-men (unscrupulous agents) Rs.700/- to
Rs.840/- per quintal of rice. SO LOSS IS AROUND RS.400/- PER QUINTAL OF RICE OF
SOME FARMERS as the Government of West Bengal inactivated the Government
Agencies like BENFED, CONFED, ECSC and credit societies (PACCS) with ulterior
motive i.e. allowed the middle-men (unscrupulous agents) to act freely in midst
of debt-ridden farmers of West Bengal – GOVERNMENT HAS NO ACTIVE ROLE TO SAVE
FARMERS.   
 
                FOR AN AVERAGE farmer in West
Bengal, heavily dependent on Boro and Rabi cultivation – a poor price for paddy
and potatoes has left them reeling. There are nearly one lakh tonne of potato
lying unsold in 405 cold storages across
the state. The cold storage need to be cleared now for the new crop. Farmers
are now selling the crop for whatever price they get. 
               
              Government of India ratified the
International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights 1966 (ICCPR). Article 6(1)
of ICCPR reads – “Every human being has the inherent right to life. This right
shall be protected by law. No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his life.” 
               Article 3 of the Universal
Declaration of Human Rights reads – “Everyone has the right to life, liberty
and the security of person.” 
              Article 21 of Constitution of India reads – “No person shall be deprived
of his life or personal liberty except according to procedure established by
law.” 
 
                The curse of huge debts for
agriculture production brought upon West Bengal’s rice bowl (Burdwan district)
by falling paddy and potato prices. The crisis is likely to aggravate in March
2012 when the potato crop is reaped. In the meantime falling paddy and potato
prices wreak havoc on the farming sector. 
              
               According to Newspapers, West
Bengal Government under Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has systematically
snatched away the right to sell crops of the farmers at a proper price and
Hon’ble Governor of West Bengal is the silent spectator and non-challant like a
stoic. For these reasons, during three months, from middle of October 2011 to
middle of January 2012 twenty one (21) farmers of Bengal killed themselves as
they unable to put up with the debt burden, repay the loan by selling crops in
astonishingly low price to the middlemen as a result of Government of West
Bengal tacitly withdrawn the agencies who are used to procure paddy from the
cultivators/farmers and/or save the cultivators/farmers from distress sell. As
usual, as routine work, the spokespersons of Government refuted the facts and
claiming that farmers are committing suicide for family feud/dispute, family
problem, mental depression, they were not farmers, there is no news etc.
inconsistent, illogical remarks. 
   
                Tapas Majhi, 35, a small farmer
of Suluntu village in Purbasthali of district Burdwan, hanged himself from a
mango tree on 14th January 2012. His brother Gadadhar said the
deceased had debt, had taken a loan Rs.30,000/- to buy seeds and fertilizers,
and he was forced to sell paddy to middlemen at a lower price. He had
cultivated paddy and coriander but could not repay the loan as he did not get
proper price for his crops. A 25-cottah land was the main source of income for
his family of four. District Burdwan
is the rice-bowl of West Bengal. 
 
                Rabindra Nath Patra, 28, a
marginal farmer of district Burdwan, resident of Ghanashyampur village under
Begpur gram panchayat, took pesticide on Saturday 14th January 2012,
and he was admitted to Kalna subdivisional hospital where he died on 15th January, 2012. His wife said – “My husband cultivated potato on 5-cottah of
land. He had taken loan from a self- help-group and had stocked up potatoes in
the cold storage against potato bonds. But he was driven to frustration when
the potato bonds failed to earn money.” 
 
                Haridas Ratna, a small farmer
of district Maldah, hanged himself on 12th January, 2012. He did not
get proper price for paddy. His wife wrote a letter to Block Development Officer,
Habibpur, Malda on 13th January 2012 and mentioned that his husband
took loan from two Societies and from one agency and he was also abused by one
loan-lender on 10th January 2012. 
 Name of the farmers who committed suicide        Date of suicide            District   
1.      Dhana
Tudu                                              12th October 2011       Burdwan 
2.      Sambhu
Das                                              14th October 2011       Burdwan 
3.      Budhi
Tudu                                               16th October 2011      Burdwan 
4.      Madhai
Ghosh                                           6th November 2011     Burdwan
5.      Bhavani
Porel                                            15th November 2011   Burdwan
6.      Safar
Molla                                               18th November
2011    Burdwan
7.      Tarun
sar                                                   24th November 2011   Burdwan
8.      Nayanmani
Paul                                        7th December 2011       Bakura 
9.      Utpal
Goswami                                          8th December 2011      Burdwan 
10.  Barun
Paul                                                20th December 2011        Burdwan
11.  Rabin
Barman                                          21st December 2011         Jalpaiguri
12.  Susen
Kumar Ghosh                                 28th December 2011        Burdwan
13.  Amiya
Saha                                               1st January 2012             Burdwan
14.  Bodhan
Hazra                                           2nd January 2012            Burdwan
15.  Arindya
Mal                                              7th January 2012            Birbhum 
16.  Kenaram
Sarkar                                        7th January 2012             Malda 
17.  Sankar
Mandi                                            9th January 2012             Burdwan
18.  Gopinath
Bauri                                          9th January 2012            Bakura 
19.  Haridas
Ratna                                            12th January 2012          Maldah 
20.  Tapas
Majhi                                               14th January
2012          Burdwan
21.  Rabindra
Nath Patra                                  15th January 2012          Burdwan
22.  Ganesh
Durlav                                            17th January 2012         Hooghly
23.  Sushanta
Ghosh                                          19th January 2012         Burdwan