Apex court asks Centre to inform it of plans to tackle farmer suicides

PTI New Delhi | Updated on January 15, 2018 Published on March 27, 2017


The Supreme Court today asked the Centre to inform it about the line of action to be taken by states for dealing with the “serious issue” of farmers’ suicide.

“It is a very serious issue and the Centre should file the proposed line of action to be taken by states with regard to the farmers’ suicide with the apex court registry within four weeks,” a bench headed by Chief Justice J. S. Khehar said.

During the hearing, the bench also comprising Justices D. Y. Chandrachud and S. K. Kaul said the government should come out with a policy which deals with the root causes of farmers taking the extreme step.

Additional Solicitor-General P. S. Narasimha said the government is taking all possible steps including procuring food grains directly from farmers, increasing insurance cover, granting loans and crop loss compensation.

He said the government is coming up with a comprehensive policy to deal with the issue of farmers committing suicide.

The bench said, “Agriculture is a state subject and the Centre will cordinate with states and come up with a line of action to address root cause of farmers committing suicide.”

Appearing for the petitioner NGO ‘Citizens Resource and Action and Initiative’, senior advocate Colin Gonsalves said over 3,000 farmers have committed suicide and the government should address all the real issues and implement a proper policy.

Expressing grave concern over farmer suicides, the apex court had earlier said it felt the government was going in the “wrong direction” in tackling the real problem.

Asking the Centre to apprise it of the policy roadmap to address the burning issue, the court had said the issue of farmers’ suicide was of “extreme importance” and paying compensation to the families of such victims “post-facto” was not the real solution.

The ASG had earlier told the court that the government has initiated many schemes for farmers and the 2015 crop insurance scheme would drastically reduce such fateful incidents.

He had said other schemes also needed to be strengthened to make farmers feel that the government would stand behind them in distress.

The plea was filed by the NGO on the plight of farmers in Gujarat and suicide committed by many of them there. The bench had expanded the scope of the petition to the entire country.

Published on March 27, 2017
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor