Experiment that's revolutionising Vidarbha, Over 507 villages are adopting this program

by kodysworld on Nov 01, 2007      Category: Others Tags: governance agriculture farmers suicide vidarbha

Over 1800 farmers have committed suicides in the Vidarbha region of Maharashtra, India. At NGOpost we have discussed reasons, debated solutions. See http://ngopost.org/story.php?title=Dying_Fields_In_depth_PBS_documentary... This story is about an experiment by the non-profit NGO, Art of Living Foundation. Suicide rates have dipped in these 507 villages through these programs which include training on new farming techniques, conserving rain water in soak pits, not to mention uplifting the farmers with spirtitually with positive thinking. Besides helping out the farmers, the programme also seeks to create better living conditions for villagers and empower women through vocational courses. In a nutshell, it seeks to address the psychological breakdown of farmers and their financially-unviable farming techniques. The state government of Maharashtra too acknowledges the work done by the Art of Living Foundation

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ady's picture


Vidharbha is one of the most backward state of Maharashtra. In recent years, it had witnessed great number of suicides. Somehow, I cropped up at one of the farmer’s house of Vidharbha. Farmer was arranging the marriage of his three sons. It was the most awaited event of the farmer’s life. Everyone was in ecstatic mood. Since, the family belongs to underprivileged class, so they had arranged marriage of their three sons together. It would also save a lot of money farmer because people are coming from Rajasthan, Kerla, and Karnataka. For this event farmer has taken debt from various zamindars, bank etc. But at the last moment, one of the zamindars refused to give money. This was the nightmare for farmer. And this nightmare became the last nightmare for that poor farmer. After fighting the atrocities of life for so many years, at last he had given up. This horrendous experience had taken the life of farmer. Now the question arises: DID THE MARRIAGE HAPPEN? YES. It’s shocking that even after this kind of tragedy marriage did happen. Neither bride nor bridegroom was ready but they had to organize marriage because they had taken debt from so many people. What an irony, occasion of marriage and funeral was happening on the same day. See, how brave were these people. How strongly they were fighting the atrocities of life. Marriage did happen even they were having loss of funds. Everybody contributed to make this marriage successful. It is like if they all were committed to themselves that even if clouds burst or earthquake occurs, they would let this marriage happen. I was impressed to see their bravery but at the same time I was depressed to see their pathetic condition. Evil shadows were not even satisfied by this .The most pitiful moment of their life was when possession of funeral met possession of marriage. People attending the possession of funeral ran towards the field in order to avoid the bad omen on bride and bridegroom life. And marriage finally happened. And poor farmer did participate in marriage even after his death.

This is a real story of a farmer of vidharbha. Government is doing nothing to improve the condition of farmers. This is a True plight of Indian farmers.
Indeed government had organized counseling centers for these farmers but that would not improve their condition. They advised them various exercises. Councilors asked them various question and gave answer to their various question. But one of the oldest farmer of vidharbha asked them a Question that –“ WHY THE FARMER WHO ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR PROVIDING FOOD FOR ALL THE PEOPLE OF COUNTRY ARE HUNGRY”?
All councilors had answer but that poor old farmer had the right Question. This question is not to that councilor but this is a question to the Indian nation. This is question to all of us. Do we have the answer?

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