The Heat: Farmer suicide epidemic in India

The Heat

It’s the seventh largest economy in the world & the third largest in Asia. So why are India’s farmers killing themselves at an alarming rate?

More than 300,000 farmers have taken their own lives in India over the past 20 years. That’s about one suicide every 30 minutes – nearly 12,400 alone in 2014. Agriculture is the country’s largest employment sector, yet farmers find themselves stuck in a vicious cycle of debt and poverty brought on, in part by long droughts, poor yields and unseasonal rains. Many simply give up.

CCTV’s Shweta Bajaj reports. Follow Shweta Bajaj on Twitter @ShwetaBajaj

For more on the epidemic of farmer suicides in India:

  • Devinder Sharma, journalist and food policy analyst
  • Shamika Ravi, an economist focusing on development economics as a Fellow with the Brookings Institution
  • Michael Kugelman, senior associate with the Wilson Center for International Scholars