New Delhi, July 2: As many as 14,004 farmers committed suicide in 2011 countrywide, the latest report of the National Crime Records Bureau has noted.
The number is lower than the previous year's figure of 15,933 but the dip might be much less considering that Chhattisgarh, which recorded 1,412 farmer suicides in 2010, claimed that there were no farmer suicides at all in the state in 2011.
As always, Maharashtra fared the worst, with 3,337 farmers committing suicide in 2011. This is worse than the previous year when the state recorded 3,141 deaths. The numbers show an abysmal story of how the special packages for the non-irrigated, chronically drought-prone areas such as Bundelkhand and Vidarbha seem to have delivered little to the most needy.
Overall, the figures for the period between 2004-2011 do show a declining trend in farmer suicides with the peak recorded in 2004 at 18,241. The total number of farmers who committed suicide during the UPA regimes at the Centre since 2004 now number 1.18 lakh. Gujarat, Karnataka and UP showed a rising trend of farmer suicides since 2004.
Besides the well known farming crisis states, it is the figures from states like Assam that startle. The northeast state recorded 312 deaths in 2011 and 269 in 2010.