Andhra Pradesh: Initiative launched to help kin of farmers who died by suicide in Anantapur

Gorle Gangulamma, who lost her husband Venkatesh last year, got ₹7 lakh compensation from the State government, but that was not enough to repay loans taken by him.

As per the G.O. in earlier days, the State government used to pay half the amount of the loans as a one-time settlement to lenders on behalf of the farmer who commits suicide. But now, a new G.O. that is in force does not mention provision of any such one-time settlement.

This has left Gangulamma, who has to pay a loan of ₹16 lakh taken from banks and individuals, in a fix. While she managed to pay back to the bank, she is yet to repay to 12 individuals who are not ready to settle for a lesser sum. Officials from the police and revenue department tried in vain to convince the lenders.

For people going through such difficult financial crises, the Anantapur district administration and REDS, a voluntary organisation, have come together to launch an initiative wherein an alternative revenue-earning avenue is offered to the aggrieved person with support from the government.

Under this initiative, Gangulamma will be given loan through a self-help group to start a kirana shop of her own to overcome difficulties as she does not own any land now.


The district administration and the organisation also launched a helpline, Jeevana Rekha, for farmers who are battling suicidal thoughts, at Amidyal village in Uravakonda mandal.

In the first-ever interaction (under the initiative) with three families from the village, Guntakal Revenue Divisional Officer J. Ravindra and REDS president Bhanuja held a counselling session for them.

Venkatesh, another famer from the same village, who had been tilling Penna Ahobilam Temple Endowment lands for past 20 years and paying lease money, did not get his CCRC Card given to tenant farmers in the State. He, therefore, is ineligible for any government scheme or compensation or weather-based insurance.

The organisation on Tuesday offered to arrange a credit under IKP scheme of the Central government for raising milch cattle while tilling the 6 acres of land.

Many farmers, who own a small piece of land (1 acre or less), but take up tenant farming on larger extent of land, are now not eligible for government schemes or compensation/in-put subsidy, Venkatesh pointed out.

Kumar Giriappa, another farmer, who also was on the verge of ending life due to failure of crops for 4 years on 4 acres of land and has ₹8 lakh of loan was also offered loan for raising milch cattle and starting a powerloom.

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