Financial Aid To Grieving Farmers’ Widows By Nana Patekar Is Affecting Real Change

[Want to be a part of this movement? You can contribute to the ‘Join Nana Patekar to Help Farmers’ campaign to aid the drought-struck farmers of Marathwada and their families.]

“The soul of India lies in its villages.”

-M.K. Gandhi

The news of farmer suicides in India has been splashed across headlines for years, a compounding plea for help for those who make up the backbone of an agrarian country like ours. Over 11% of suicides in India constitute of those by farmers who depend on an erratic monsoon for their livelihoods, are burdened with debt and who struggle continually to feed their families. Over 5, 650 farmer suicides were reported across the country in the past year, with the highest number reported in Maharashtra at a staggering 2, 568 tragic deaths.

Recently, actors Nana Patekar and Makrand Anaspure decided to take matters into their own hands and actually effect change. They visited over 300 families of farmers in districts in the Marathwada and Vidarbha regions, and offered distributed cheques of financial aid personally to the bereaved. A cheque of INR 15, 000 was given to each of the kin, along with a heartfelt plea not to surrender to the dire circumstances.

Source: thelogicalindian.com

Source: thelogicalindian.com

“All of us want to help, but most of us are not sure if the money we want to give will reach the right people. So, I decided to visit these people myself and help them,” he said. He also spoke about how ridiculous it was, that almost 70 years after independence, our government is still not able to provide over 75% of its population, highlighting the lopsided ‘development’ that India is undergoing.

“We need to take these things seriously. I feel it is time for a revolution. If a farmer can kill himself, tomorrow he can kill you. Look at the level of his frustration. Beware, this situation could become dangerous. Their helplessness could turn into rage, they might turn Naxalites. You are creating that kind of a situation. Just give them electricity and water, which is their basic right. Come on, they provide you bread,” Patekar told reporters later.

Source: Scoopwhoop

Source: Scoopwhoop

With his hands-on initiative, Nana Patekar inspired Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar too made a choice to contribute towards the well-being of drought-hit farmers and their families. Organised by Inspector General of Police Vishwas Nangre Patil, financial aid by way of cheques of INR 50, 000 were distributed in the Beed district to 30 widows who has lost their husbands tragically to the agrarian crisis.

“I spoke to Akshay about the drought in Marathwada and the plight of farmers initially during his film premiere,” Mr Patil said. “I showed him a video of how actors Nana Patekar and Makrand Anaspure were helping farmers. So that’s when he expressed his desire to help but he wanted to do it discreetly and silently.”

Akshay Kumar has reportedly earmarked a whopping INR 90 lakh to help over 180 families in the drought-struck region.

It is indeed inspiring to see such prominent personalities from creative fields contributing to important issues affecting our country, and combined with various campaigns on crowdfunding platforms, we hope that we can — through a global, crowd-sourced effort — affect positive change amongst those who are an integral part of our nation.

[Want to be a part of this movement? You can contribute to the ‘Join Nana Patekar to Help Farmers’ campaign to aid the drought-struck farmers of Marathwada and their families.]

 

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Aditi Dharmadhikari

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