Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Sharing more burden

Man, initially had to plough his land by himself, later there were bullocks. At places in Srilanka or Burma, even elephants are known to be used. Later Man invented tractors. Life seemed to be improving and headed for the best. But atleast in India, Man has had to now work along with the animals to earn his daily bread.

Shankar Dabe Rao, a cotton farmer in Maharshtra's Buldhana District has been forced to fill-in for one of his bullocks, which was washed away in the recent floods.
Nothing wrong in Man, working along side animals, which have worked for him all these years. But this Man is a farmer. A Farmer who works hard all day and provides food or clothing for us to eat and dress at home. His work has now doubled, because he has lost one of his animal friends.

"I am waiting for the government's rehabilitation package. My financial situation is so bad that I have even thought of committing suicide," said Shankar Dabe Rao, the cotton farmer.
Lal Bahadur Shastri, the late prime minister coined the Slogan "Jai Jawan! Jai Kisan!", so we thought they were taken care of. When BJP said "India Shining", we thought we were ready to become a superpower. The Congress party said "Congress Ki Haath, Aam Aadmi Ke Saath", but sadly it all comes down to this.

With over a 150 farmers having committed suicide in this region in the month after the Prime Minister's visit, the state government is working out a compensation package for poor farmers, but many like Shankar fear it may just be too little and too late.
Farmers are at the bottom rung in the ladder of occupation. They are the true people of the soil, who toil hard, to feed the entire nation, to provide for the entire nation. If we cannot elevate their status, grant them riches and more wealth and reforms, can`t we atleast lessen their burden.
Info, pic Source : IBNLIVE : Article


Velu Nair said...

Sorry to bring abt this, but I cant help making an analogy of sorts here. Ur post reminds me of this evenly spread across phenomenon abt the ones at the lowest rung of the ladder being paid a pittance, though they usually work their butts off. Reminds me of the teachers in Primary schools who lead pretty hectic lives with truck loads of work dumped on them all the time, and being paid a measly salary nevertheless. Quite a huge contrast to teachers elsewhere and on different levels of the educational hierarchy. Sad, but true!

Srijith Unni said...

@Velu: Very True Velu, very true indeed. Dont feel sorry about bringing it up here.. Teachers in Primary schools, especially those who work in remote areas and villages are paid pittiably less. and that is a very sad state of affairs. I am aware of this personally. Goes to show that we need to get some basic things right, in the development of the country. But what we get instead is the news that the salary has been hiked up for the MLA`s...

Sreejith Kumar said...

This was an eye-opener. The living condition and status of the peasants and farmers here are still miserable. It is also time to think what were the the revolutions and movements in the names of these poor labourers for? Who gained from all these? The answer is "rich became richer, the poor poorer". Suicides and suicide tries everyday. Still the prices of commodities are very high here, and all this money goes into the agent's kitty.

passerby55 said...

Some days ago i read how farmers in punjab are buying land in USA. the farmers in USA are aged and have no one to look after their hectares of land. so they have invited punjabi farmers to come over and take the land and start growing grapes ... our framers are being exposed to a better technology and they are eager to learn and earn more...Farmers in Punjab are the only farmers who are able to buy such land in USA the papers said.

i guess inequality also exists in this occupation.

thanks for posting this, srijith

priya said...

I think all rural areas needs more upliftment and support from the govt' and the people itslef. If we think of them while we eat, we can help them.

Jigs said...

Well said. I got to know things much better. It is really sad and I hope the government or the people can do something.

Kakshi said...

Hey..amazing article..really set me thinking and couldn't help but feel a strong surge to do something! Hope all those who read this are able to help the ones in need.
Nice post..

Ram said...

This is sad, and this is frustrating. You know how I write a lot about India being on the verge of something great, well, I also read enough to know that we will forever be "on the verge" unless things like these get taken care of.

Is it the bureaucracy? Is it corruption? Is it a lack of money? Surely, it cannot be due to a lack of awareness...no one can give an excuse of not knowing about these things. I remember vividly an article in the IHT where they were talking about the suicide of a farmer in Andhra because he could not pay a 40,000 bank loan. He is a farmer, and he committed suicide because he did not have a hope of repaying 40,000! Is that how low we have fallen now? Makes me want to cry...

As Shweta says, I think its upto the everyday Indian to do what they can. Kinda makes you think what you are doing with your life...

Srijith Unni said...

@Sreejith : Yes, Sreejith, that`s what i also thought about.. What were all those revolutions for and what did they achieve.. ? and your answer reveals how this system needs to be scrubbed clean.

@Passerby55: Yes Farmers in Punjab are more wealthier than their counterparts across the nation. Either due to the favourable climatic conditions or due to the support they get there from the government. But India is a nation where there is a large percentage of farmer population and therefore some definite steps need to be taken for the others too.

@Priya : Exactly Priya.. that is exactly what we need to do.. Think of them while we eat.. That will make a major difference.

@Jigs: Yes a sad state of affairs.. We sure must do something.. Thanks my friend, for your support.

@Shwetha : I`m so glad you felt so.. Me too.. We can definitely make a start..But as a taxpayer, I would like to see the government functioning and doing what it has to do too..

@Ram : Yes, Ram it is upto the everyday Indian, but we all pay tax.. we contribute to the government. So when we select a government, we expect it to function. We may pitch in money and save a life or two.. What about the others..?? Won`t we be just feeding them fish, without actually giving them a fishing rod or even a fishing net.?

Has to be me said...

Oops just typed a long comment & it seems 2 have disappeared! :(

Anycase I was saying that it is so sad to note the plight of the farmers of our country. Wish v cud do someting fr them. Expecting a little also from the Govt will b too much of an expectation.

alex said...

P Sainath always brings to light issues such as farmer distress and what is happening is really saddening. We call ourseles a country acieving 7 to 8% growth but the fact is that agricultural growth has decelerated in the recent times.
Moreover, agriculture employs about 60% of the population.
I wonder whats the use of waivering loans by the government, when majority of the debt the farmers have will be with the money lenders and not government banks.

Like Velu said, it equally depressing to note that teachers are paid so less. I feel that all services to humanity mainly teaching should be remunerated adequately.

alex said...

My blog on Economics.


RandomThoughts said...

Sometimes I wish we had dictatorship instead of democracy. Somebody to shake up the whole system that is actually an irony to what is described as democracy. I know i'm wrong in saying this but this system sucks.

We have this farmer on one hand & Rahul Mahajan on the other.


Srijith Unni said...

@Has to be me : Too bad you lost the long one... I like big comments. Yes, we can do something.. There are efforts on IBN Live to collect funds from readers to help the farmers of Maharashtra.

@Alex: Very True. The nation itself seems to act oblivious of the people at the grassroot level. There is more interest in the market economy than interest in studying the economy viewpoint of the agriculturists. Visited your blog.. Real true ble economic , my friend.! I am a student of science and sadly I dont comprehend the ideas well, but still was able to relate with a few posts.

@Rashmi : A thought, which I myself have had.. Though there might be injustice, a lot of things can also be cleansed in the system. After all Germany cannot ignore the contribution of Adolf Hitler to it`s greatness.!
But for a while let us try everything possible to make democracy a success..!

Gaurav Jain said...

really sad and unfortunate story. the photo you have put up is quite shocking, and I'm hoping that the condition of farmers doesn't deteriorate if it doesn't improve.

Srijith Unni said...

@Gaurav : Yes, truly most sad and unfortunate. Hope the years to come become witness to improvement.