Three more farmers committed suicide in Vidarbha on the eve of Diwali, taking the number of farmers’ suicides this year to 624, according to the Vidarbha Jana Andolan Samiti (VJAS), a social group working among farmers of Vidarbha.

Champat Shendre of Junapani village in Wardha district, Vasant Rathod of Kinhal village in Yavatmal district and Mangesh More of Virud village in Chandrapur district committed suicide in the last two days, the VJAS said.

“The cultivation cost has almost doubled this year due to unusual rise in the prices of seeds, fertilizers and labour rate whereas the market prices of cash crops like cotton and soyabean are much lower than that of last year,” said VJAS president Kishor Tiwari. Till date there is no intervention from the government for procurement of crops at the Minimum Support Price, forcing farmers to offload their crops at throwaway prices resulting in heavy losses.”