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Farmers' Suicides in Maharashtra
Economic and Political Weekly (2006)
  • Srijit Mishra, Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research

An agrarian crisis has precipitated a spate of suicides in Maharashtra. The suicide mortality rate for farmers in the state has increased from 15 in 1995 to 57 in 2004. The rain-dependent cotton growing farmers of Vidarbha are faced with declining profitability because of dumping in the global market by the US, low import tariffs, failure of the Monopoly Cotton Procurement Scheme and withdrawal of the state (resulting in declining public investment in agriculture, poor government agriculture extension services and the diminishing role of formal credit institutions). The farmer now depends on the input dealer for advice, leading to supplier-induced demand, and on informal sources of credit, which result in a greater interest burden. In short, the farmer is faced with yield, price, credit, income and weather uncertainties. The way out is to merge bold public policy initiatives with civil society engagement.

  • Agrarian scenario,
  • Case-control study,
  • Risk factors,
  • suicide mortality rate
Publication Date
April 22, 2006
Publisher Statement
This is the authors post-peer review, accepted paper published in the 'Economic and Political Weekly'. The link to the journal web page is as follows:
Citation Information
Srijit Mishra (2006), "Farmers' Suicides in Maharashtra" Economic and Political Weekly, 41(16): 1538-1545, available at: The link to the journal web page is