Farmers & IT people

The comparison between farmers and IT professionals in the article “Are IT people the fall guys?” (Open Page, May 22) by Meera Gopalakrishnan made interesting reading. The argument that farmers need to be more responsible for their lives is understandable. I think so too. The condescending tone of the article leaves much to be desired though. The argument that farmers' loan waivers are paid for by the income tax collected from IT professionals, for instance. Maybe the author is right, and I thank her on behalf of all farmers in India.

But does she know that the foodgrains produced in our country are marked as “essential commodities” and their prices are controlled by the government? The free market forces of demand and supply do not apply here. The government adheres to populist measures, on the one hand, provides subsidies, loan waivers, etc., (which the IT professionals detest) but, on the other, it strongly pushes down agricultural prices so that our billion people can afford to eat. When prices of all goods and services go up every year, it is inflation. The IT people would know that; it is basic economics. But when the pricing for agricultural produce is stifled upon for decades by skewed government policies, making a beggar out of the once proud farmer, he resorts to suicide.

Work ethics and professionalism are not a prerogative of the IT industry alone. I am ashamed that agriculture is pulling down the national growth rate, so we work very hard on our fields to counter that. We enjoy our work as much as the IT people do. We do not expect or accept a single rupee from the government or anyone else to help us make a living. There are some who have money. And then there are some who are rich.

P. Soundrapandian,


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Printable version | Mar 29, 2020 3:27:30 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/letters/farmers-it-people/article2040605.ece

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