Vidarbha's Farmers

There is no perfect place on earth but we can strive to make our own micro worlds more equitable. Today, the world perceives India as an emerging economy poised to play a larger role in the 21st century. However, the soul of India continues to lie in villages like Sewagram and in her farmers. Gandhiji’s dream was to develop rural India ....each of us could play a role in keeping alive Gandhian teachings in myriad ways.  

Sevagram village is in Vidarbh region (Insert Vidharbha map hyperlink). Vidarbha is the Cinderalla of Maharashtra losing out in policy and budgetary allocations to industrialised and glamorous regions in Western Maharashtra like Mumbai, Pune, Sholapur. Whilst Vidarbh contributes significantly to Maharashtra’s position as the leading producer of India’s cotton (nearly two-thirds of the annual output), sadly, the same region is infamous for suicides by debt-trapped farmer. Approximately 3.4 million cotton farmers occupy the Vidarbha region  and 95% of them struggle with massive debt, according to the Vidarbha Jan Aandolan Samiti (Refer Behere cross reference). On government request, MGIMS conducted a study of farmer suicides in Vidarbha region for insight on reasons compelling an individual to resort to ending one’s life. This study may be of interest to those wishing to learn more about mental ill-health in Vidarbha’s farming communities (Refer Behere’s publication) Also Refer Book Synopsis.