In the wake of farmers' suicide in several districts across Kerala, Congress president and newly elected Wayanad MP Rahul Gandhi on Friday dashed a letter to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, asking him to provide assistance to the family of a farmer, who was forced to commit suicide owing to financial burden.
VD Dinesh Kumar, 53, committed suicide consuming some poisonous substance due to alleged non-repayment of loans. Kumar’s relatives said financial burden had forced him to take the extreme step. According to police, Kumar had taken a loan of Rs 10 lakh from three banks and was reportedly facing recovery proceedings.
Gandhi, in his letter to Pinarayi dated May 28, said he was "deeply saddened" by the farmer's suicide. He also requested the state government to conduct an inquiry and extend financial support to the family.
"Kumar's case isn't an isolated one. There has been a spate of farmer suicides in Wayanad, due to an inability to repay loans," Gandhi had said in his letter.
വയനാട്ടിൽ നടന്ന കർഷക ആത്മഹത്യയെക്കുറിച്ച് അന്വേഷിക്കണമെന്നും കുടുംബത്തിന് ആവശ്യമായ സാമ്പത്തിക സഹായം നൽകണമെന്നും ആവശ്യപ്പെട്ട് ബഹു.കേരളാ മുഖ്യമന്ത്രി @vijayanpinarayi ന് ശ്രീ @RahulGandhi കത്തയച്ചു. pic.twitter.com/nTUL527QfJ— Rahul Gandhi - Wayanad (@RGWayanadOffice) May 31, 2019
"What is disturbing is that while the government of Kerala has announced a moratorium on repayment of farm loans till December 31, 2019, yet farmers are still being pressured and hounded by loan collection agents," the letter said.
The Congress chief said it was important to consider "long-term measures" to free farmers from the "vicious debt trap" given the devastating impact of the last year's floods.
"I offer you my fullest support and cooperation in finding concrete long-term solutions to the critical issues Kerala's farmers are faced with and in ensuring every farmer in Kerala lives a life of dignity," Gandhi said.