Dr. Geeta Radhakrishna Menon

Gold Star - 93,820 Points (3rd August 1950 / Mumbai)

Farmer 10 - How Can We Help The Farmers? Just Think! - Poem by Dr. Geeta Radhakrishna Menon

Heavily burdened with debts,
Hands to mouth existence
Hardly anything to look forward,
Harassed by life beyond endurance!
How can we help the farmers?
Just think!

An Octogenarian farmer,
Pathan Mehboobkhan from Beed,
Promised a loan waiver by the State,
Alas! Waits and waits -holding his certificate!
How can we help this poor farmer?
Just think!

After stringent eligibility criteria,
After identifying beneficiaries of the loan waiver,
After lengthy verification process by the State Government,
At last, Loan waiver declared for over eight lakh farmers.
What was the Certificate ceremony all about?
What happened to the promises? Just think!

The aged farmer Pathan and his wife Lakhatbi are
Terrified of the life's ongoing drudgery and misery,
They have lost their cotton crop to the bollworm pest,
That swept the Marathwada and Vidharba areas, of late.
Lakhatbi has sold her bangles and works as farm hand now.
How can we help these senior farmers? Just think!

Pathan and Lakhatbi continue to struggle
To make both ends meet.
They live in a tiny hut lined with dried sheaves of Jowar,
They have no furniture except a small charpoy,
Pathan's prized possession is his loan waiver certificate.
How can we help this innocent farmer. Just think!

The plight of the farmers in Maharashtra,
In the Beed district, hit by hailstorms
Is pathetic, with sunken eyes and pinched look!
Should we not make haste to redress their grievances?
Can they wait for months and months to get help?
How can we help these senior farmers? Just think!

Topic(s) of this poem: farmers

Poet's Notes about The Poem

This poem is based on a true life story of a farmer who lives in Beed District of Maharashtra.
According to a Times of India Report, Maharashtra Government had announced 34 Crore rupees as a farm loan waiver, following a strike by the farmers. Over 8 lakh farmers were presented with loan certificates in a grand ceremony. The farmers were relieved. But not for long! Though the loans were sanctioned, the money has yet to reach them. The loan waiver disbursal has yet to be activated and completed. The Govt has promised the farmers to complete the disbursal by end of February 2018.
Meanwhile, the frustrated farmers like Pathan, call the whole ceremony of loan waiver certificate a mere farce.

Comments about Farmer 10 - How Can We Help The Farmers? Just Think! by Dr. Geeta Radhakrishna Menon

  • (3/8/2018 8:32:00 AM)

    An extremely sad state of affairs, you broke my heart with this so very touching poem. I see this everywhere, in my country, the politicians will pocket the money meant to help the poor. I hope they will read this poem and have their conscience pricked! Thanks Geeta, a message that needed to be told to all (Report)Reply

    Geeta Radhakrishna Menon(3/8/2018 9:52:00 AM)

    Yes, indeed, the farmers are going through a tough time. It is extremely sad.
    Thank you for your support Loke.

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  • Glen Kappy (3/2/2018 8:57:00 AM)

    as hard as it is for small farmers here in the u.s., you remind me, geeta, of the despairing plight of farmers in india. the uncertainty that farmers live with! especially dry farmers dependent on timely rains. but if the crops are good, they're at the mercy of the end users who pay as little as they can get away with. here in the u.s. tax payers actually subsidize agra-business that threatens smaller farmers.-glen (Report)Reply

    Geeta Radhakrishna Menon(3/2/2018 10:32:00 PM)

    Glen, the farmers of india are in a miserable condition. My heart goes out to them. We live in the cities and enjoy the fruits of their hard labour, while they suffer.
    You are absolutely right. They are under pressure from both sides. Firstly the weather conditions and nature's generosity and secondly, the dealers who squeeze every penny out of them.
    Thank you Glen for reading this poem.

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  • (2/25/2018 10:22:00 AM)

    Hi Geeta,
    The plight of Indian marginal/small farmers has been the same since time immemorial. Promises are not kept. They are not for keeping; just to secure votes. There are various supports by the central and state governments, but hardly any reaches the farmer.
    It is the same story, repeated..

    (3/2/2018 10:26:00 PM)

    Thank you Unni for reading this poem and for your comment and opinion on this poem.
    In Kerala too, there are a lot of farmer issues. You must be knowing all their problems and the helpless situation of the poor farmers.

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  • Kumarmani Mahakul (2/23/2018 1:12:00 PM)

    The plight of Octogenarian farmers of Maharastrs has been inscribed heart feltly by u in this poem. It is really pathetic but how can we help the senior farmers should be brought out. Great write. Thanks. (Report)Reply

    Geeta Radhakrishna Menon(3/2/2018 10:21:00 PM)

    Thank you Kumarmani ji for reading this poem.

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Poem Submitted: Friday, February 23, 2018

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