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Agrarian Crisis in India$
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D. Narasimha Reddy and Srijit Mishra

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780198069096

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198069096.001.0001

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Agrarian Crisis in Punjab

Agrarian Crisis in Punjab

High Indebtedness, Low Returns, and Farmers’ Suicides1

(p.261) 10 Agrarian Crisis in Punjab
Agrarian Crisis in India

Karam Singh

Oxford University Press

This chapter analyses the underlying causes of the agrarian crisis in Punjab, one of the most prosperous states in India. It shows the pronounced deceleration in agricultural growth since the early 1990s and the decline in profitability in agriculture because the cost of inputs has been increasing faster than output prices, coupled with poor or stagnant yields. Other factors responsible for the decline in income from agriculture are the increasing cost of capital equipment such as tractors, the rising cost of irrigation as a result of the sharp drop in the water table, and significant idle capacity in capital equipment. Although farmers' suicides can be attributed to many factors, the main culprit is economic stress due to indebtedness.

Keywords:   Punjab, agrarian crisis, profitability, agriculture, farmers, farmers' suicides, indebtedness, agrarian distress, income, irrigation

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