Kolkata, Jan 23: Days after West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee denied that farmers’ suicides in the state were linked to farm debts, Governor M.K. Narayanan Monday said many agriculturists owed huge sums and the government should find a solution.
“That (farmers’ suicides) is an issue engaging the attention of the central and state governments. Farmers’ suicides are unfortunately taking place. We have to find ways to ensure that it does not happen,” Narayanan told reporters here.
“Many of them, I suppose, are deeply in dept,” he added.
The Congress, whose ties with the ruling Trinamool Congress have been strained, and the Left Front earlier alleged that 25 farmers had taken their lives in the first eight months of the Mamata Banerjee government.
Most suicides – at least 17 – have occurred in the fertile Burdwan district, earlier known as the rice bowl of Bengal. Suicides have also occurred in Bankura, Hooghly, Malda and Jalpaiguri districts.
However, Banerjee has pooh poohed the accusations, saying no farmer killed himself due to any debt burden.
“They had personal problems, family issues, they had huge personal loans, running into even a crore. And some of those being mentioned have died of diseases, and have not committed suicide,” she stated.