A delay in the procurement of paddy has put farmers in Upper Kuttanad in distress.
On Monday, a paddy farmer from Neendoor attempted suicide after rice mill authorities demanded six kg 'thaara' (wastage) per quintal of paddy for procurement. The farmer identified as Thomas, of Makkothara paddy fields, was saved by other farmers.
After the incident, farmers staged a protest in front of the office of the paddy marketing officer in Kottayam. They ended protests after authorities intervened and promised to initiate talks with mill owners on Tuesday.
This was the second such suicide attempt by farmers in the district in less than a week. On Wednesday, Sebastian Palathingal of Kallara tried to end his life at Kallara Krishi Bhavan after mill authorities demanded 16 kg wastage per quintal.
Farmers alleged that rice mills were demanding six to 16 kg wastage per quintal of paddy resulting in delay in the paddy procurement in Upper Kuttanad region. They said that agents and rice mill authorities had joined hands to take undue advantage of the situation.