BHOPAL: Amid the intensifying farmers stir across Madhya Pradesh, a middle-aged farmer allegedly committed suicide by consuming celphos tablets in Raisen district on Thursday night.
Kishan Lal Meena (45), a native of Sagonia village in Raisen district took the extreme step by consuming celphos tablets, a form of Aluminium Phosphide, a highly toxic inorganic compound used as a fumigant and pesticide.
Kishan Lal Meena’s family told Raisen district police that the farmer told them he had consumed the poisonous tablets because of his inability to repay mounting loans and electricity dues worth around `17 lakh. His kin told Raisen Kotwali and Devnagar police officers that Meena was under pressure to repay loans, including a bank loan of Rs 10 lakh, Rs 5 lakh to money lenders besides outstanding electricity bills worth Rs 2 lakh.
The pressure to pay back the money with heavy interest, coupled with not being able to get his three daughters married due to a prolonged illness pushed Meena to take the step. He was first rushed to Raisen district hospital, from where doctors referred him to Bhopal for life-saving treatment, but he succumbed en route.
Devnagar police station in-charge Ramesh Rahuvanshi said that the body was handed over to the family members after autopsy was completed. “We are now trying to identify the private money lenders whom the family blamed for traumatising Kishan Lal over outstanding debt,” said Raghuvanshi.
Over the last 16 years, more than 20,000 farmers and agricultural labourers have committed suicide in Madhya Pradesh over varied reasons. As per data presented in the state Assembly, from February 2016 to February 2017, 1,982 farmers and labourers have committed suicide in Madhya Pradesh. In May this year, the Centre had informed the Supreme Court that over 12,000 suicides were reported in the agricultural sector every year since 2013.