Archive for the 'Farms' Category

India and the money crisis: knowledge is the solution
1 October 2008

October 1 2008

 money heart

“How much money does a man need in order to be happy?”

“Just a little more!” — Nelson Rockefeller

Nowadays the Indian economic ‘miracle’ is all the rage. Just this year alone entrepreneurs are building over 100 new malls in the major cities around the country. A few days ago the newspapers reported that India is making more new millionaires per year than any other country in the world.  India is in a get-more-money fever it has never witnessed before. Lust for money is spreading like meningitis in the minds of India’s citizens and the government is proud of touting its new found wealth and opportunities and its consumer society.

 Like the legendary lemmings, its populace is being urged to pursue a suicidal course — literally.


It is now witnessing its first financial suicides:

Kolkata Telegraph: The stock market crash claimed its first victims when Abhishek Banka, a sub-broker, committed suicide and, unable to bear the loss, his wife Sona threw herself from a highrise.

The bloated body of 22-year-old Abhishek, missing since Wednesday, was today found floating along the bank of the Hooghly.

Six hours later, Sona jumped to her death from her parents’ ninth floor apartment on Russel Street.

Police said Abhishek appeared to have been driven to suicide after suffering losses of Rs 86 lakh in the stock market collapse since the budget. They said the sub-broker with Suresh Kumar Fogla & Associates blamed himself for the losses.” -[end quote] 

And on the land, scores of farmers kill themselves every week. Unable to cope with the changes in the markets they have no control over, many get into overwhelming debt and the meagre earnings from cash crops fails to cover their repayments.

Kolkata Telegraph:

Kadegaon/Tasgaon (Sangli in western Maharashtra), Jan. 30: The scourge of traditional agriculture has spread to new-age crops with at least 86 debt-hit grape farmers killing themselves in Sangli and Solapur districts of western Maharashtra since January 2005.

In Sangli district, 400km from Mumbai, there have been 61 cases of suicide by farmers growing table grapes, a capital-intensive fruit, since 2003.

The suicides were not triggered by one failed crop: they were a result of five years of crop failure; unscrupulous middlemen who have kept the purchase price static at Rs 10 per kg; a prolonged period of rising input costs; and unremunerative prices for the produce.” [end quote]

Monetary despair is not just happening in the countryside either:

Kolkata Telegraph: Aasra, a Mumbai-based suicide prevention NGO, claims to have recorded a 30 per cent increase in 10 years in the number of people who call because they are in a monetary mess and are contemplating suicide. Most of these people are young, ambitious, high spending and impatient to get rich, says Johnson Thomas, director, Aasra. “As the avenues for spending increase, most young Indians have started living beyond their means. This leads to debt, depression and suicide,” says Thomas. [end quote]

 Srila Prabhupada was never enamoured by ‘economic advancement’. He always told us it was an illusion that would end in distress.

In December 1975 Prabhupada was visiting Sananda in Gujarat. On his first morning there he took a walk through the fields in the local district:

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