Did someone just say ‘farmers’ suicide’?

As per the state officials, scarcity of water has affected over 90 lakh farmers, out of which around 3300 decided to end their lives in the past one year alone. During such state of events, hosting high-profile IPL (Indian Premier League) matches would seem insolent, but the IPL bosses do not find anything wrong with the idea as conveyed by Mr. Rajiv Shukla In this connection, a PIL was filed by NGO 'Loksatta Movement' which suggested shifting of IPL matches from Maharashtra to the states which have water in abundance.

A Bombay High Court bench, headed by Justices VM Kanade and MS Karnik heard the litigation and observed, “How can you (Cricket associations and BCCI) waste water like this. People are more important or your IPL matches? How can you be so careless? Who wastes water like this? This is criminal wastage. You know what the condition is in Maharashtra”.

According to sources, at least 60 lakh litres of water will be required to maintain pitches at three Maharashtra stadiums where IPL matches will be played. IPL chairman Rajiv Shukla tried to justify his stand of not shifting the matches. “If the water needed to irrigate two-three grounds were to solve the problem of Maharashtra's farmers that would be another thing. I don't think this (saving water by shifting matches) would serve any purpose. Sport is a different thing, it needs little water. Farmers need huge amount of water, all political parties should come together to deal with this crisis of water shortage,” opined Shukla.

He might have a point here. Indeed, the amount of water needed to solve the problems of 90 lakh farmers is much more than 60 lakh litres. However, this is where the value of intent comes into the picture. How would have BCCI officials felt if there was an insufficiency of cricket grounds to host matches and government allocated the few available to individuals or other associations for celebratory events? I would like to clarify that in no way am I trying to compare water scarcity with the lack of space to play but only trying to present my idea of the current situation by placing an analogy.

For a farmer who is not even living hand to mouth for years, and for whom the very notion of existence is perplexing, whose life is hanging by a thread, any kind of support, however inconsequential or little it may seem, carries the substance of giving him a reason to live and look ahead with optimism.

It is to be seen what would be the next step or final decision of the BCCI. Whatever transpires, may it be beneficial for all!

With this, I rest my case.

By: Ira Shukla

 

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