This village in Punjab is full of women, men from all households commit suicide over debt

Do you know any village where no man is left and only widowed women are living? There are many villages in Punjab where there are no men left in any family, all the men living in these villages have ended their lives by committing suicide due to debt and now people have started calling them widows’ villages. When it came to light then a reporting team of Zee Media was sent to these villages. Let’s know what reporters saw in these villages.

It is a matter of great regret that farmers in Punjab are the only vote bank for leaders. Zee Media’s team reached Mansa in Punjab, where there is a house of farmer Nazar Singh in Kot Dharmu village. Now only memories of Nazar Singh are left. Nazar Singh committed suicide by hanging from a tree and then his son Ram Singh ended his life by consuming poison. The family lost two generations because they were not in a position to repay the loan of Rs 4 lakh which they took for the farming.

The eyes of Nazar Singh’s wife now keep looking at the same tree, on which he ended his life by hanging. This incident is from September 1, 2011, and even today, the eyes of the wife and daughter shed tears when they remember that day. A loan of Rs 4 lakh forced father to take a drastic step.

The family could gather only two and a half lakh rupees even after selling a part of the house. Nazar Singh’s son Ram Singh made all possible efforts to repay his father’s loan installment. But the interest kept increasing and the principal remained the same. As a result of which, Ram Singh too ended his life. This is not the story of only one house in Kotdharmu village, but many men have committed suicide due to the burden of debt.

In 1999, Tribune reporter Varinder Walia found out that 30 women were widowed in three years in a place called Maqboolpura and he named it widows’ colony. Zee Media’s team reached the house of a farmer family named Ranjit Singh. Ranjit Singh’s family took a loan for farming that further increased to 11 lakhs. Moreover, the disease of his son left the family in shock.

Malwa region of Punjab is now becoming infamous for the suicide of farmers. There are 4000 voters in this village but about 20 to 25 farmers have committed suicide. It is also alleged that farmers are compelled to sell their crops like cotton at less than the minimum support price. Apart from this, weather and poor system at times leave no option for farmers but to commit suicide.

Writer, historian, and activist Dharam Sikarwar is a very active author The Youth. He writes on national and international issues, environment, politics. He is an avid book reader as well.