A FARMER, Gurjeet Singh (45), committed suicide by hanging from the ceiling fan at Bajewala village in Mansa district on Monday. Gurjeet had around Rs 2 lakh pending debt of banks and commission agents due to which he was in stress and hence took this step, said his family members as well as leaders of Bharti Kisan Union (Ugrahan).
Gurjeet, a farm labourer, was landless. He is survived by two sons and two daughters. His wife and children had gone for work while he was alone at home when he took his own life. When his family members returned home for lunch, they saw Gurjeet hanging. Gurjeet’s wife, two sons and a daughter had gone for work. They also work as farm labourers. The other daughter is married and expecting.
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Gurjeet’s brother Dheera Singh said, “His debt had grown to Rs 2 lakh. He had taken loans to meet the family needs from time to time from commission agents and now he wanted some more money as his daughter was expecting. He, however, was not getting that from anyone and was stressed.”
This is the third suicide in Mansa in the past two days and the second in Bajewala village. Malkiat Singh, circle president of BKU (Ugrahan), said, “Yesterday, 55-year-old Nachhatar Singh of the same village, who had seven acres, committed suicide by hanging himself. He used to sleep there for the past many days to take care of the fields from stray cattle. On Sunday morning, when his son came from home with tea, he found his father hanging from the ceiling. Nachhatar had Rs 12 lakh debt pending and he was under stress due to this.”
Nachhatar’s son Jagjit, who recorded his statement with the police, said, “Rs 5 lakh was the loan outstanding against banks while Rs 7 lakh was taken from the commission agent, who had filed a case against us as well. Out of the 7-acre land, only 3 acres is fertile and the rest is not giving much yield. So, selling land was not an option for my father.”
On Sunday itself, another farmer, Hansa Singh, of Rangrial village under Bareta block in Mansa, committed suicide a few days before his son’s marriage. Information revealed that he had married off his daughter recently and his son was to get married on February 27. However, he had a few lakhs of outstanding loan and no money for his son’s marriage. Ram Singh, president of BKU (Ugrahan), Mansa district, said, “Hansa committed suicide by consuming pesticide and was declared dead when taken to hospital.”
Hansa Singh had taken loan at the time of his daughter’s marriage and could not repay the previous loans and now his son’s marriage was also due for which he had no money. Meanwhile, DSP Narinder Singh told The Indian Express, “We took the statements of family members and they told us that debt was the main reason behind the suicides. We took action under Section 174 CrPc and we are also investigating the matter so as to find the exact reason behind the suicides.”