Maharashtra: 29,000 farmers treated for depression in two years, says Deepak Sawant

In the first six months of 2018, close to 1300 farmers have committed suicide, which is a shocking average of seven deaths per day

Maharashtra: 29,000 farmers treated for depression in two years, says Deepak Sawant
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  • In Maharashtra, from April 2016 to March 2018, as many as 29000 farmers have been treated for depression.
  • Around 22, 565 farmers have been treated in the Out Patient Department (OPD), while 6366 farmers underwent treatment in the hospital.
  • Maharashtra’s Health Minister, Deepak Sawant has given this information in the written reply in the legislative council.

Drought, unpaid loans, not getting proper price for the farm produce and unable to get fresh loans from the banks are forcing the already debt-ridden farmers of Maharashtra into depression, and abetting them to commit suicide. In the first six months of 2018, close to 1,300 farmers committed suicide, which is a shocking average of seven deaths per day.

Maharashtra health minister, Dr Deepak Sawant, while giving a written reply, has stated that alarming 29,000 farmers underwent treatment for depression in the past two years.

Dr Sawant said, “In order to motivate the depressed farmers, the state had launched ‘Prerana’ campaign in 14 districts, where the farmers’ suicide had been reported. In the past two years close to 29,000 farmers have been treated for depression in the OPD and some of them had to be hospitalized as well.”

The opposition leader of the Maharashtra Legislative Council, Dhananjay Munde, who raised the question, while speaking to My Medical Mantra, said, “The state government has given the number of farmers’ who have been treated for depression. However, no information has been given to suggest how many of them have been cured. Also, no information has been provided on how many of these farmers committed suicide.”

Munde further added, “My question is, how much money has the state spent on Prerana campaign? If the scheme had been implemented properly, we could have saved the farmers from committing suicide. The state must come out with a white paper on this.”