2 Tamil Farmers Threaten To Commit Suicide After Govt’s Silence On 12 Days Of Protest

Posted by Debalin Roy in Environment, Politics, Video
March 28, 2017

Two farmers among the protesters belonging to the areas in and around Trichy, Karur and Thanjavur in Tamil Nadu, tried to commit suicide on the 12th day of their protest at Jantar Mantar, by climbing a tree. The protest started on March 14, 2017.

The farmers who are carrying the skulls of dead farmers with them, have been devising innovative ways of protesting almost daily. Some of these ways include playing dead, putting a noose around their necks and eating rats.

On March 21, 2017, they met Finance Minister Arun Jaitley to discuss their problems. Jaitley asked for a two-day window to come to a decision. However, the government has been silent so far.

The protesters’ demands include a better drought-relief package from the government and loan waivers from banks. “Since we have not been able to cultivate anything, how are we going to pay off our loans?” said an angry agitator.

The protests have emerged in the aftermath of a devastating drought – the worst Tamil Nadu has witnessed in the past 140 years. Farmers in the region have been incurring heavy losses.

Dr R. Valavan, a Tamil living with his family in Delhi, had also come to join the farmers in solidarity. Talking about the problems farmers face back home, he said: “Rain water is wasted in many parts of the country. On the other hand, we have drought-stricken famers forced to end their lives. If the government could do something about it, it will be of great help to these people. Every year, the number of farmers committing suicide increases. It’s extremely disturbing.

The two farmers, who tried to commit suicide by climbing a tree at Jantar Mantar, could be stopped only after much pleading from fellow protesters, media and the public.

One of the persons who tried to commit suicide said: “I attempted suicide because there has been no response from the government so far and I am frustrated. We have been protesting for many days.

The protest will go on until our demands are met,” he added.

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Video by Kashish Badar

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