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No farmer committed suicide over drought: Tamil Nadu

In a development bound to anger the farmers, the Tamil Nadu Government on Friday conveyed to the Supreme Court that drought was not the reason for farmer suicides in the state. The Tamil Nadu government filed a reply in the Supreme Court on Friday stating that no farmer had committed suicide in the state, and clarified that those who had ended life, took the extreme step due to personal reasons.

No farmer committed suicide over drought: Tamil Nadu
Edappadi K Palanisamy with the Tamil Nadu farmers, who protested in New Delhi on April 24

New Delhi

This comes after the Supreme Court on April 13 ordered the Tamil Nadu government to file a detailed reply in the farmers’ suicide issue in two weeks. 
Expressing displeasure on inaction on farmers’ suicide issue, the apex court lashed out at the government for not taking enough measures to prevent the farmers’ suicides in the state. An apex court headed by Justice Dipak Misra said, “It is very painful to hear that farmers are committing suicide and the state government is not taking enough steps.” 
An affidavit filed by the state government said the kin of 82 farmers, including the 30 farmers who have committed suicide, have been given Rs 3 lakh each as ex-gratia from Chief Minister’s Relief Fund. It said as per the reports compiled from information given by different district collectors, 52 of the listed 82 farmers had died of reasons other than suicide.
The affidavit filed by state government’s standing counsel M Yogesh Kanna said the state government was taking several measures to dissuade farmers from taking the extreme step, including collective farming and introduction of dip irrigation for which more than Rs 2,000 crore has been sanctioned. 
Kanna said the state government was also considering waiving loan of farmers taken through cooperative banks, in order to provide relief.

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