Why Are Indian Farmers Committing Suicide?

The factors that have caused 200,000 suicides in India are rooted in the policies of trade liberalization and corporate globalization which ensnare farmers in a spiral of indebtedness engendering despair.

In 1998, the World Bank’s structural adjustment policies forced India to open up its seed sector to global corporations like Cargill, Monsanto and Syngenta. The global corporations changed the input economy overnight. Farm saved seeds were replaced by corporate seeds, which need fertilizers and pesticides and cannot be saved.

The second pressure Indian farmers are facing is the dramatic fall in prices of farm produce as a result of the WTO’s free trade policies.

The suicide economy of industrialized, globalised agriculture is suicidal at 3 levels — it is suicidal for farmers, it is suicidal for the poor who are derived food, and it is suicidal at the level of the human species as we destroy the natural capital of seed, biodiversity, soil and water on which our biological survival depends.

The suicide economy is not an inevitability. Navdanya has started a Seeds of Hope campaign to stop farmers suicides.

Much more in the full article at voltairenet.org

See also this report in thecitizen.in –Understanding “Created Poverty” And Farmer Suicides In India (Archived as pdf)