Centre for Environmental Studies Warangal

2-2-421, Kishanpura, Hanamkonda (A.P)

India - 506001









to the farmers who always committ their toil to life and suffer endless  misery silently;  but now driven to committ suicides.




Farming community in India today is entangled in a crisis- ridden state.  Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Maharashtra and Punjab are witnessing unabated farmer’s suicides.  By now more than 360 farmers have committed suicides in Andhra Pradesh alone, since December1997. Of them, 84% occur in the telangana region and more than 40% in Warangal District alone.  Indeed a great cause of concern.


Some view it as a consequence of a failure of  cotton crop while others attribute it to unprecedented weather conditions. Few others hold that it is an account of failure of agricultural technology when implanted on unsound conditions.  Another perception is that it is the result of  a failure of agrarian system it at the political economy level.  Thus Cross-Section perceptions differ far and wide.


The initialisation of the process of agricultural development which commenced with the adoption of green revolution in mid 60’s inspite of some positive changes, agriculture is beset with accumulated problems which, perhaps must have been responsible for gathering crisis. The agrarian crisis must have exploded in 1997-98 with the occurrence of adverse environmental conditions leading to drought and pest outbreak. For understanding of agrarian conditions and to identify the reasons for farmer’s suicides, a few local voluntary organisations i.e. Centre for Environmental Studies, Society for Development Alternatives, Warangal Consumer Council and Society for agricultural/Rural Development have jointly sponsored a study.



The study team comprises of the following :

1. Dr.A.Sudarshan Reddy, Advisor, Warangal Consumers Council


2. Sri S.Vedantha, Vice - President,  Society for Development Alternatives


3. Dr.B.Venkateshwar Rao. Secretary,  Centre  for Environmental Studies


4. Sri Ch. Sunder Ram Reddy, J-Secretary, Centre for Environmental Studies


5. Sri Y.Venkat Reddy, Secretary, Society for Agricultural/Rural Development.



            The study team has gone through relevant records from different sources, visited 50 deceased farmers’ households and collected required information. To work out economics of different crops ,relevant data are obtained through schedules from 50 small farms in the district. It has made extensive interviews with the cross section of the society.  The study has brought out three interim reports/research papers.

1.      Report submitted to the Central Team on Agricultural conditions in Warangal District under the title “Report on the Present Status of Agriculture in Warangal District”on 29-1-1998.

2.   “Changing Agrarian Conditions and Emerging ,Patterns of  Informal Credit in Warangal - A view Farmers Suicide Deaths”. Paper presented at the seminar on “Emerging trends in Financing Rural sector in India” being held on 24-3-1998 under the auspices of Department of Economics, Kakatiya University, Warangal.


3.   “Economics of Different Crops in Warangal District 1996-97 and 1997-98” paper presented at the seminar on Telangana Districts’ Cotton and Chilly on 4-4-1998 at Warangal being organised by Department of Agriculture and N.G. Ranga Agricultural University, Hyderabad.


All these three papers were presented before the “Peoples’ Tribunal” being held at Warangal on 16-4-1998 under the auspices of Rytu Sahayaka Committee(A.P.).


This is the final report with the title “Gathering Agrarian Crisis-Farmers’ Suicides in Warangal District (A.P.) India”.


We wish to express our gratitude to all institutions, government officials from different departments and farmers and cross section of people who spared valuable information and enriched our knowledge in this regard. Our special thanks  are due to Dr. T.Sudhaker Reddy, Principal, C.K.M. Arts & Science College, Warangal for the encouragement and facilities provided to us. Our thanks are due to Sri P.Kishan Rao, who helped in data collection and Mr.G.Madhu Mohan for typing.




               Dr.A. Sudarshan Reddy     Dr.B. Venkateshwar Rao

         Chairman         Secretary

Study Team     Study Team



Page No.


List of text tables

List of charts

List of appendix tables

Frontice piece


Chapter                                                            Items

One :            Introduction :

Introductory-perceptions of farmers’ suicides-pattern of agricultural development in A.P.-Issues raised-Objectives and scope of the study -Methodology -Plan of Report.

Two:            Background of Andhra Pradesh

Agricultural work force-Share of agriculture-Emerging small farm sector-Changes in cropping pattern- Indices of crop area -Productivity and production -Spread of cotton -Irrigation trends in A.P.- Energisation of wells Fertilizer and pesticide consumption credit -income and poverty - Farmers’ suicides in A.P.

Three :            Emerging Trends in the District Agriculture

Population  and Rural Work Force -Growing Small Farms - Soils - Rainfall and Recurring Droughts -Trends in Irrigation ,Ground Water Potential Falling Ground Water Levels  -Shifts in Cropping pattern -Use of Modern inputs - Seeds, Fertilizers, Pesticides, Extension Services, Agricultural Practices - Credit, Emergence of Input -Output, linked Market - Productivity Trends - Agricultural prices - Indebtedness.

Four :            Economics of Different Crops

Cost of cultivation -Gross Returns -Return/Cost ratios - composition of cost of  cultivation -Inter-temporal comparison of Cost & Returns.


Five :    Fallout of 1997-98

The Drought - Falling Ground Water Table - the later rains  - Outbreak of Pest - Effects on different Crops   Intra-District variation in Effects.


Six :            Farmers’ Suicides

Section - I - Characteristic Features of Deceased Households -Castes, age, Landholdings -  Cropping pattern - Sources of Irrigation  - Reasons for Farmers’ Suicides - Debt Burden -Purpose of Borrowing -Accumulation of Debts - Crop Failure - Sources of Credit - Emergence of Inter linked Markets.

Section - II -Imminent causes and consequences suicides in Warangal District - mandal-wise Distribution of Suicides in Warangal District.


Seven :            Summary of Findings and Conclusion

Select Bibliography (Annex-I)

Definitions and Concepts  (Annex -II)

Appendix Tables


List of  Text  Tables :

4.1.      Per Acre Costs & Returns for Different Crops in Warangal

District 1996-97 & 1997-98.

4.2.      Per Acre Costs & and Returns for Chilly and Cotton for 1975-76

5.1.      Season -wise Comparative Rainfall Position in Warangal

District 1996- 97 & 1997-98.                                                                   


List of  Charts & Maps:

1. Map Showing   Mandal-wise Suicides in Warangal District.           

2. Chart Showing Mandal-wise Distribution of Suicides in Warangal Dist.


List of Appendix Tables :

2.1.1.            Distribution of Working Population in A.P. (1961-91)

2.1.2.            Number and percentage of Holdings and Area Operated

According to size in A.P.    

2.1.3.   Index Numbers of Area, Productivity and Production of

Selected Crops in A.P. 1992-93

2.1.4.   Area under Cotton Crop among the Districts and regions of

Andhra Pradesh 1982-83  - 1992-93           

2.1.5.   Net Area Irrigated by Sources Region-wise 1982-83 and 1992-93           

2.1.6.   Per capita Income Ranked by Districts(1955-56)      

2.1.7.            District-wise Incidence of Poverty in A.P.1977-78           

3.1.1.   Number and Percentage Distribution of Operational

            Holdings in Warangal Dist.1976-77 -1990-91           

3.1.2.   Rainfall in Warangal Dist.1982-83-1997-98           

3.1.3.   Net Area Irrigated by sources -Warangal Dist.           

3.1.4.            Cropping Pattern in Warangal District

3.1.5.            Institutional Credit Supply in Warangal Dist.1987-88-1997-98

3.1.6.   Yield Trends for Selected Crops in Warangal Dist.

3.1.7.            Agricultural Product Prices for Selected Crops in Warangal Dist.

3.1.8.            Seasonal Prices of Selected Crop Products           

4.1.1.   Per Acre Costs & Returns for Cotton 1996-97

4.1.2.   Per acre Costs and Returns for Cotton 1997-98

4.1.3.   Per Acre Costs and Returns for Chilly 1996-97 and 1997-98

4.1.4.   Per Acre Costs and Returns for Rice 1996-97

4.1.5.   Per acre costs and Returns  for Rice 1997-98           

4.1.6.   Per Acre Costs and Returns for Maize 1996-97

4.1.7.   Per Acre Costs and Returns for Maize 1997-98

4.1.8.   Per Acre Costs and Returns for Groundnut  1996-97

4.1.9.   Per Acre Costs and Returns for Groundnut  1997-98






1.1.1:  A unique feature that emerged in the agrarian scene in Andhra Pradesh is the manifestation of an agrarian crisis in the farmers’ suicide deaths. The state had bitter taste of suicide deaths by farmers in1987-88 where 37 farmers committed suicide unable to bear severe losses occurred in cotton crop owing to pest out break in Guntur and Prakasham Districts.  The havoc was created by American Bollworm. This was followed by deaths of Tobacco farmers in other areas in the later period.


1.1.2:  After a decade, similar problem recurred with greater dimension in 1997-98. From December 1997 to the end of April 1998,the state is inflicted by more than 360 suicide deaths by farmers. As could be seen from frontice piece, this time deaths are more concentrated in the semi- arid region of Telangana.  More than 2/3 of total suicide deaths occurred in this region. Further concentration is seen in Warangal where 140 deaths have been recorded since December 1997.


1.1.3:  The spate of suicides by farmers is unabated. this happening in the state of ‘Annapurna’ (Rice Bowl) is a cause of grave concern.


1.1.4:  A cursory look into the spatial spread of suicides in Andhra Pradesh give an impression that most of the farmers’ suicides are taking place in cotton growing areas. While Guntur and Prakasham have grown cotton then and now, the problem occurred then and now. The Telangana Districts have also have been witnessing a shift in the cropping pattern orienting towards commercial crops like cotton and chilly during last decade.  Therefore, the suicides, which have been taking place now in large number, are on account of cotton farming. Much of the devastation is attributed to the occurrence of severe pest problem on cotton then and now and the present problem is supposed to be precipitated by adverse weather conditions. That way, the process and effects of growing ‘risky and uncertain crops ‘in Andhra Pradesh comes to occupy the ‘centre stage’ discussion these days.


1.1.5. However, a problem of this serious nature may not be attributed to a single factor but must be born out of gathering agrarian crisis in the state overtime.


1.2.1. In the early stages, the main focus on agricultural development in the state was rested in the rationalisation of land institutions and the community development programmes. The potential for increased agricultural production was expected to come from redistribution of land and several land reforms were introduced to effect changes in land tenures. Further, these reforms were expected to meet the objective of equity as well. In practice, the effect of these reforms being limited, the land struggle of 1950s and 1960s directed against ‘jagirdari’ system and for protection tenants and for distribution of ‘banjar’ lands among the landless all have contributed for the emergence of owner cultivation in the state. In the subsequent period, disintegration of joint family system, subdivision and fragmentation, declining caste occupations and due to lack of adequate opportunities outside agriculture have increased the pressure on land and led to the growth of small and tiny holdings in the state.


1.2.2. By considering that the traditional agriculture has limited scope for further production ,the main plank of the state has been adoption of new agricultural technology. In the early stages of the green revolution in Andhra Pradesh, the spread of HYV technology was mostly confined to rice. The pre-requisites of this technology being assured irrigation and intensive use of inputs, obviously the coastal region was in the forefront in adoption. Opening of canal irrigation in the 1930s, preexisting system of Rayatwari land tenures and better resource position in the form of credit etc, have already opened up new vistas of increased agricultural production long back and turned it into a ‘rice bowl’ of Andhra Pradesh. Such a resource base has formed not only the basis of introduction of IADP and IAAP but also paved the way for early adoption of New Agricultural Technology. Though late in the other regions of the state, some pockets of areas with assured irrigation could adopt it on a small scale, but vast areas in other regions depending on rain fed crops have been left out.


1.2.3. The review of early green revolution experience in the state has clearly brought out two important problems to the fore. It exhibited regional variations in the adoption of technology and also variations among the size group of farmers. It has been claimed that the new technology is ‘scale neutral’. However the institutions that are essential for the success of the new technology are not scale neutral and as a result, the small farmers were precluded from sharing the benefits of green revolution in the early period.


1.2.4. To mitigate these deficiencies, the state has promoted well irrigation in the Telangana and Rayalaseema regions by encouraging energisation of wells with pumpsets. Further, the small farmers were assisted in digging wells and installation of  pumpsets etc.  1970s and 1980s witnessed rapid growth in the number of wells and electric motor pumpsets. This brought relative change in the source of irrigation, with well irrigation becoming predominant over other sources. Thus, ground water became a major source of irrigation in initiating new technology, with result new areas are brought under cultivation of HYV rice. By 1973-74, rice production picked up momentum and in the subsequent period it contributed substantially to increase agricultural production in the state. The study of  A.Sudarshan Reddy1 while analysing irrigation trends at the state level, brought-out that well irrigation trended to favour large and medium farms, as positive relation existed between farm size and development of well irrigation.


Economics of  HYV Crops :


1.2.5. The study of  K.S.Surya Narayana 2 for period of 1975-76 to 1977-78 covering the three regions reveals the early experience of green revolution in respect of Rice, Jowar and Maize. That study shows that regional variations exist in the pace and extent of adoption of HYV in terms of number of growers and coverage in area in all the districts. The study also reveals the existence of wide gap between potential yield and actual yield obtained by farmers. The study further, reveals that HYV production was found to be economical only in Rice at operational costs. Farmers incur heavy losses in the production of HYV on the basis of commercial costs (cost c). only on the basis of operational costs they realised varying magnitude of returns. In Jowar and Maize, the economic feasibility was not established to convince the farmers to go in for HYV.


1.A.Sudarshan Reddy  “Irrigation Development in Andhra Pradesh ----A Cross Sectional study” ,Paper  presented at the Third Annual Conference of the Andhra Pradesh Economic Association held at Kavali during 19-20, January,1985.   (page-5)


2.Surya Narayana,K.S., Final Technical Report-Economic aspect of  Yield Increasing Technology in Producing Food grains in A.P., Department of Agricultural Economics, A.P.A.U, Rajendra Nagar, Hyderabad, 1980.


It is during the same period that HYV technology was introduced in Jowar and Maize in view of limitations of assured irrigation. In the subsequent period, not deny the fact that agricultural production has got stimulus under the new technology by increased productivity in respect of several crops.


1.2.6. In the later period, a notable feature that emerged on the scene is a shift in the cropping pattern orienting towards non-food crops over food crops. Between 1982-83 and 1992-93,the share of non- food crops has gone up from 24 percent to 35.4 percent. We notice striking regional differences in the magnitude of such a shift. While Andhra region maintained its stability in the cropping pattern, in the case of Rayalaseema phenomenal shift occurred in the case of groundnut. The Telangana region noticed considerable shift to non- food crops notably cotton. Though, overall area under cotton in A.P. has shown only marginal growth, this crop has spread into new areas In Telangana and more particularly in the districts of  Warangal, Karimnagar, Medak and Nizamabad. The share of cotton in these districts has shown substantial increase during the last decade.


1.2.7. In view of uneconomical nature of certain crops, constraints in ground water, power shortages, farmers searched for alternative crops, in the process cotton along with chilly has emerged on the scene. Originally, this crop is grown predominantly in Adilabad and Mahaboob Nagar and used traditional local varieties. However, the HYV cotton and chilly have become prominent only because Andhra settlers in several black tracts of Telangana raised them successfully with higher yields. Encouraged by this, local farmers have followed the suit. Further, they have promoted this crop by way of providing seeds and other inputs.


1.2.8. As already mentioned earlier, several of major crops grown in this region proved to be uneconomical. A superimposition of an alien and risky and resource intensive crops like cotton and chilly on unsuitable soils is likely to further deepen the existing agrarian crisis.


1.2.9. It is in the backdrop of the above that certain issues are raised in the context of agricultural development in the state. 1) In view of growing very smallholdings overtime what is the feasibility (or relevance) of new technology form into a vital issue. 2) another important issue raised in this connection is the implanting of new technology among the illiterate and ignorant farming community and its disastrous consequences. 3) in view of depleting ground water resources particularly in semi arid regions, an important issue that arises is the sustenance of new technology. 4) The green revolution so far has not only created regional imbalances but also about imbalances in the cropping pattern and therefore, the issue is as to how to correct the imbalances in the cropping pattern which will have serious repercussions at the regional level. 5) In the context of the growing small farm holdings and depleting resource position, reduction of public investment in irrigation development, extension services, credit, input supplies what will be the repercussions on the farming community more particularly on small farms. An issue of vital importance in the present context is whether one could link the present farmers’ suicides to the deep-rooted agrarian crisis that emerged on the agrarian scene of Andhra Pradesh during the last decades. It is therefore, a matter of interest to find out reasons for unabated farmer suicide deaths more particularly in the Telangana region. For the purpose of analysis, Warangal district has been purposely selected where more than one-third of total farmer suicide deaths took place in Andhra Pradesh.


Objectives :


1.3.1.The main objective of the study is to identify the reasons for unprecedented farmers’ suicide deaths in Warangal district. The specific objectives of the study are:


1)         To analyse the broad trends like changes in land holding position, cropping pattern, irrigation development, natural factors, cultivation practices, debt position etc. with a view to link them suicide deaths.

2)         To examine the investment pattern in well irrigation and to ascertain the changes in groundwater tables.

3)         To measure the impact of drought and unfavourable weather conditions as prevailed in 1997-98.

4)         To examine the pattern of credit distribution and emerging trends in the credit market.

5)         To work out costs and returns for different crops in the district.

6)         To ascertain the reasons for suicide deaths from the deceased families and

7)         To work out policy implications and recommendations based on the observations made in the study.



Scope of the study :


1.3.2.   The common understanding is that the present farmers’ suicide deaths are more on account of failure of cotton crop but the fact is that the crisis is not only limited to cotton or for that matter any other commercial crop like chilly and groundnut, it is as well a case in other crops also. The factors contributing to such a crisis are too many and have been accumulating over the period. Therefore, our analysis tries to probe into larger questions faced by the present agrarian situation. It addresses its focus on such vital questions as resource use, technology, agrarian institutions, and the question of sustainable development of agriculture in the state. Further, the study also examined in detail credit relations among commission agents, pesticide sub-dealers, relatives and others.



Data collection :


1.3.3. For the purpose of the study, the data are collected from both secondary and primary sources. For analysing the broad trends at the district level the relevant data are collected from different government departments including the chief planning officer. It also relied on several previous studies conducted in this area on different aspects related to district agriculture. For analysing the costs and returns for different crops ,relevant data are collected from 50 sample small farms drawn from 10 mandals through structured questionnaires for 1996-97 and 1997-98. For identifying the reasons for suicide deaths relevant data are obtained 50 deceased families through structured questionnaires.




Method  of  Analysis :


1.3.4. The technological transformation that has been in vogue in the state during the last 30 years no doubt an important force to reckon with in altering the agrarian structure. Therefore, the available information both for the state and district is made use of to make inter-temporal comparison in order to catch the main trends that were in operation. In order to measure the impact of drought and the peculiar weather conditions on yields we made the comparison of the current year with that of preceding year i.e. 1996-97 which happened to be a normal rainfall year. The data collected from the 50 farm households is made use of to work out costs and returns for five major crops of cotton, chilly rice, maize and groundnut under irrigated and unirrigated conditions. From this, the return cost ratios are worked out to show the economic feasibility of different crops and also to identify the major factors influencing costs and returns. For selected crops like cotton and chilly, inter-temporal comparison is made on the basis of data collected now and the data obtained from study on these crops by A.Sudarshan Reddy for the year 1975-76. The basic data collected from another 50 deceased farm families is made use of to identify the reasons for suicide deaths. The debt position, source of debt, purpose of debt, crops grown, yields obtained and the reasons for crop failures etc. were the main aspects considered in this respect. Tabular analysis is widely used.


Limitations of the study :


1.         Suicide deaths in general may occur on account of economic, social, cultural and psychological factors. As the information from deceased persons could not be elicited on the factors leading to death and also the psychological stress which they are subjected to can only be described by him but in the absence, the information is collected from family members and their neighbours as to the probable reasons for their suicide deaths. When economic and social depressions are afflicted on individuals they may be reaching a brink and at this stage any minor event may lead to extreme action. Therefore, the observations made in this regard are subjected to such limitations.


2.         Small farms being predominant in the district agriculture and that the suicide deaths are within this group, we have analysed economics of different crops on the basis data generated from small farms of less than 5 acres. However, in the medium term, the cropping practices will normalise at the village level. Therefore, the findings from this study may also be relevant and useful for other farmers as well.


3.         The study was limited one district and therefore, the conclusions drawn from this study should be taken only as indicative of the overall general crisis in agriculture.


Plan  of  the  Report:

1.3.6. The first chapter provides a brief review of agrarian trends in the state and across the regions of the Andhra Pradesh and raised certain issues in the context of deteriorating agrarian conditions in the state. Objectives, scope and method of analysis are presented in the first chapter.


The second chapter deals with the salient features of agriculture in the state.


The third chapter provides the background of the district over the years in order to catch the main trends in agricultural transformation in the district.


The fourth chapter deals with the analysis of costs and returns for different crops.


The fifth chapter deals with the agrarian conditions prevailing in 1996-97 and 1997-98 and analyses the role of natural factors on agrarian conditions.


The sixth chapter deals with the characteristics of deceased farmer families and analyses the reasons for farmers’ suicide deaths in Warangal district. Discussion, summary and conclusions are provided in the seventh chapter.


At the end, select bibliography (Annex-I), definitions and concepts (Annex-II) and Appendix tables follow these chapters.







2.1.1.                  This chapter deals with some of the basic characteristic features of agriculture in the state. It covers the major trends that are in operation since formation of the state. They include distribution of work force, emergence of small farm sector, changes in cropping pattern and place of cotton, trends in sources and  extent of irrigation, credit, fertilizer and pesticide consumption, income and poverty, and farmer suicide deaths.


Agricultural Work Force :

2.1.2.                  Andhra Pradesh is predominantly an agricultural state with three-distinct agro-climatic regions viz. Coastal Andhra, Rayalaseema and telangana with varying but typical farming systems. Rural Population, which was 29.09 lakhs in 1961, has increased to 486.21 lakhs in 1991. However in terms of percentage it has comedown from 82.6 to 73.1 during the same period. Agriculture provides major source of livelihood. In the total working population, it provides employment to 69 percent in 1991. During the last two decades it is maintaining more or less same level. Among the agricultural workforce, agricultural  labourers form majority. During the last two decades the percentage of workforce as cultivators has comedown marginally, on the contrary, agricultural labourers show up an increase in absolute number and percentage. (see appendix table 2.1.1.)



Share of Agriculture in State Domestic Product :

2.1.3.                  Agriculture still continues to enjoy predominant position in the state domestic product. The share of primary sector, which was 59.4 percent in 1960-61, has gradually declined to around 40 percent in 1995-96.


Emerging small farm sector : 

2.1.4.                  The fact that the number of cultivators has gone up from 57.9 lakhs to 78.9 lakhs during the last two decades speaks of increased pressure on land. The number of operational holdings have gone up substantially from 61.54 lakhs to 92.90 lakhs between 1976-77 and 1991 showing an increase of more than 50 percent. Among those total operational holdings of less than 5 acres increased  both in terms of number as well as percentage. It went up from 66.9 percent to 77.3 percent during same period. In terms of land share small and marginal holdings account for 22.1 percent in 1976-77 and gone upto 39.5 percent in 1990-91.


Changes in cropping pattern :

2.1.5.   The predominant cereals grown, are rice and jowar in all the three regions. While maize is mostly confined to Telangana region. In the early period, Andhra Pradesh relied more on food crops with 77 percent area covered under them. But since 1980 s there is a significant fall in the area covered by jowar, bajra, ragi and millets. However rice maintained its primacy around 35 to 40 lakh ha.




2.1.6.   During 1982-83 and 1992-93, striking changes have occurred in the composition of agricultural production. The area under non-food crops has gone up from 24 to 35.4 percent during this period. However, we notice regional differences in respect of proportion of area covered under non-food crops. Coastal region noticed marginal increase from 21.0 to 23.3 percent and it continues to hold traditional cropping pattern more intact with rice predominance. On the other hand, Rayalaseema witnessed phenomenal change i.e. from 39.9 to 67.7 percent during this period. Much of its contribution came from an increase in the area under groundnut in place of jowar and millets. In case of Telangana, the share of non-food crops increased from 18.4 to 28.8 percent. Much of its increase has come from cotton and groundnut.


Indices  of  Crop  Area,  Production and  Productivity ;

2.1.7            Increase in agricultural production is effected by area shifts among different crops and productivity changes on account of adoption of HYV technology. The area shifts and productivity changes have a bearing on the regional development pattern. In order to catch the trends in agricultural production and the regional dimension, indices are provided in respect of crop area, production and productivity for important crops up to 1992-93 by taking 1969-70 as base. A look into the Appendix table 2.1.3 shows that as many as 10 crops have lost their area in different magnitudes but the worst effected are jowar, bajra.  Inspite of increase in productivity, the share of these crops in production has got reduced considerably in this group except tobacco, mestha and bengalgram. On the other hand, rice and green gram gained only marginally however, the productivity increases in these two crops has raised the indices of production in these crops. Substantial gains have been realised in terms of area by cotton, black gram, sugar cane, maize, groundnut and chilly. Indices of productivity are also substantial for the crops of cotton, black gram, maize and chilly. These two gains together have contributed mainly to the higher production indices. Among different crop categories, cereals have lost substantially while fibres gained in terms of area. Non-food crops have shown index of 156.


2.1.8.   If we add the regional dimension, it provides the sources of increased contribution of the respective crops. While groundnut has gained in place of jowar and bajra in Rayalaseema area, cotton, chilly and maize got considerable area in Telangana.


Cotton Cultivation in Andhra Pradesh:

2.1.8.   As early as in 1955-56, the area under cotton was 4.07 lakh ha in Andhra Pradesh and until 1980-81 it was maintaining a level between the lowest of 2.60 lakh ha to 4.14 lakh ha .as maximum. However, it picked up since then and gradually increased over the years reaching to a peak level of 10.59 lakh ha in 1995-96. In 1991-92, Andhra Pradesh occupied 9.2 percent of the total area under cotton in the country. However, its contribution was 13.3 percent in total cotton production in the country. Relatively more contribution to production came from higher yields after Punjab and Haryana. On the other hand, Maharashtra, which occupied 35.3 percent in area, contributed only 11.8 percent of production owing to lower yields.


All India Position of Cotton:

2.1.10. At the all India level, cotton arwa is around 7 to 8 million ha with slight year to year variation since 1951 -52. However production increased from 3.28 million bales (of 170 kg each)in 1951-52 to 9.84 million bales in 1990-91. Much of its contribution came from increase in productivity from 85 kgs per hectare in 1951-52 to 217 kgs per hectare in 1991-92. Apart from other factors, in important source in increase in productivity is the rising proportion of irrigated area under cotton, which rose from 9.1 percent in 1951-52 to 33.6 percent in 1989-90.


Spread of Cotton in Telangana :

2.1.11. With in Andhra Pradesh, Guntur and Prakasham in coastal area and Kurnool in Rayalaseema and Adilabad in Telangana region have been traditionally growing cotton. However, 1992-93 notices significant increases in the area noticed in almost all the districts in Telangana except Hyderabad. Telangana region as a whole witnessed an increase in its share from 2.8 percent in 1982-83 to 9.5 percent in 1992-93. On the other hand, its share remained more or less the same in Rayalaseema region. In coastal Andhra, its share increased marginally from 4 percent to 5.1 percent during this period. Witnessed an increase in its proportion from 15.8 to 22.0 during this period. Thus, the Telangana districts have noticed a shift in the cropping pattern towards cotton. (see table 2.1.4).


Irrigation trends in A.P. :

2.2.1.   In view of its role in raising productivity, security and in facilitating the spread of Hyv technology, development of irrigation formed main flank in the state plans. Public investment in this area received greater attention. Under this influence net area irrigated has increased from 27.46 lakh ha in 1955-56 to about 32.3 lakh ha in 1979-80 and to 40.28 lakh ha by 1992-93. During this period, the corresponding figures for gross irrigated area are 31.99 lakh ha., 42.40 lakh ha and 50.85 lakh ha respectively. Canals accounts for the largest share then and now. However, in the recent past, the relative share of the canals has gone down marginally. Between 1955-56 and 1992-93, the net area irrigated under canals has gone from 12.92 lakh ha to 17.26 lakh ha. But, its relative share has gone down from 47.0 to 42.9 percent. Wells and tube wells which irrigated an area of 2.84 lakh ha. In 1955-56 has gone upto 14.10 lakh ha. While that of its share has gone up from 10.4 percent to 35 percent, a phenomenal increase indeed. Contrary to this trend, area under tank irrigation has come down from 39.8 percent to 18.1 percent during this period.


2.2.2.   while this being the broad trend at the state level, there are wide regional variations in terms of different sources of irrigation (see table 2.1.5). In coastal Andhra, canals continued to be a predominant source. However, its relative share has come down marginally. Tube wells have become important additional source of irrigation in the later period there. Well irrigation constitutes only 7 percent. On the contrary, in Rayalaseema tanks, which constituted by far the largest source of irrigation, has been replaced by well irrigation. At present, tank irrigation constitute a minor share and even less than the canal irrigation.


Energisation of Wells :

2.2.3.   In the semi arid region of the Telangana, wells have been playing considerable role in providing irrigation traditionally. However, well irrigation got impetus under the emphasis of rural electrification since the third five-year plan. Energisation of pumpsets also got encouragement on account of successive droughts during mid sixties and consequent food crisis. In Andhra Pradesh the number of electric pumpsets being 1800 in 1961 and 2700 in 1966 increased rapidly to 1.86 lakhs in 1971 and to 4.01 lakhs by 1981 and to 13.31 lakhs in 1993. It is also striking to note that more than 5.9 percent of pumpsets are concentrated in the Telangana region and is followed by Rayalaseema 23 percent and coastal Andhra 18 percent. Thus, the rapid increase in the number of pumpsets particularly in Telangana and Rayalaseema regions has resulted in greater exploitation of ground water since mid sixties and contributed for enhanced share of well irrigation in these regions. Empirical evidence shows that groundwater is relatively more dependable than the other sources of irrigation like tanks and canals etc. in the years of insufficient rainfall. Thus, development of well irrigation served as an important instrument of expansion of new agricultural technology in these two regions.


2.2.4.   A variation in sources of irrigation across regions generated over the years has led to inequitable distribution of irrigation benefits. While huge public investment was required for growth of canal irrigation of coastal Andhra region and huge irrigation subsidy provided there reduced the cost of irrigation to an insignificant level. The early dependence of Telangana and Rayalaseema regions on tank irrigation has no doubt benefitted the farmers with less irrigation charges. But, over the years, the gross negligence of these irrigation structures and of lack of adequate new investments on minor irrigation development resulted in the denial of benefits to the farmers in these regions. On the other hand, development of well irrigation has been done mostly by private investment. Excepting for a few targeted sections like small and marginal farmers and tribal communities, where state support was there, the rest of capital formation took place from private sources. This has enhanced the demand for long term capital needs among the farming community in these regions. Studies have clearly brought out that compared to canal irrigation costs, cost of irrigation under wells was far higher followed by tank irrigation.




Fertilizer Consumption :

2.2.5.   As Hyvs are more fertilizer responsive and more pests prone, the spread of Hyv technology necessitated increased use of fertilizers and pesticides. With the advent of commercial crops, particularly after 1980s like Hyv cotton and chilly have enhanced the levels of fertilizers and pesticides use. In 1980-81, the total consumption of fertilizers was 575.6 thousand tonnes in the state. At pre hectare level the consumption was 43.9 kgs and ranked fourth in the country. A decade later, the total consumption has gone up to 1618.8 thousand tonnes, an increase of 2.81 times. But one noticeable change is that it has improved its rank from fourth to second in terms of fertilizer consumption among different states in the country. We also notice a significant change in the cropping pattern during this period.


Pesticides Consumption :

2.2.6.            Another concomitant change associated with the new agricultural technology is that of increased use of pesticides in the country. At the all India level, pesticide consumption has gone up from 7.5 thousand tonnes in 1968 to 83.2 thousand tons in 1995. Last decade witnessed a phenomenal growth in the use of pesticides. Since 1988, it has been growing at the rate of 20 percent per annum. Pesticides consumption 1995 is 450 gms. per hectare at the all India level. We notice inter- state differences in the use of pesticides. Andhra Pradesh at present ranks third in pesticide consumption with 0.83 kgs per hectare of cropped area after Tamilnadu (1 kg.) Punjab (0.87 kg). We also find cropwise differences in the use of pesticides. More than 70 percent of total consumption find use in cotton and rice crops alone. It is estimated that cotton alone, which occupies about 6 to 7 percent of area in the country, consumes nearly 50 percent of total pesticides in the country. IARI’s studies further bring to the light that these four states, which notice higher quantities of pesticide use also, suffered more from insect/pest problems and more disease outbreaks. Way back in 1987-88 cotton was infested with American bollworm. The consequential failure of crops, resulted in farmers committing suicides. In 1997-98 a serious outbreak of several pests like spodoptera litura, American bollworm, white fly etc resulted in unprecedented crop losses in several parts of the state, not only confined to cotton but also to other crops. A recent study in Andhra Pradesh reveals Helicoverpa Armigera, a pest widely effecting cotton crop in parts of the state has become 300 fold resistant to the pesticides, cyper mithrin. The emerging practice of monoculture of cotton and chilly has given rise to the problems of soil degradation, decreasing productivity, pest resistance and ultimately a threat to sustained development of agriculture.



2.2.7.   The spread of green revolution in the state no doubt raised the demand for institutional credit both for crop cultivation and long term investments particularly in the development of well irrigation. In the post-nationalization period, commercial banks witnessed considerable increase in the number of branches in the state. However , for 1990 the credit supply by all the scheduled commercial banks has averaged only Rs. 2000 per ha. of  net sown area. By any standards this is considered to be a meagre amount which can not fulfil even 20 percent of the credit needs of the farming community. Further, it is noticed that there are inter-regional variations in the distribution of the credit at per hectare level. Coastal Andhra received relatively more credit per hectare of sown area (Rs.2540 per hectare). Telangana follows next with Rs. 1900 per hectare and that of Rayalaseema least with Rs. 1380 per hectare.


State Income and Poverty :

2.2.8.   The state per capita income was Rs. 232 in 1955-56. We can notice inter regional differences in per capita income where coastal Andhra record highest per capita income of Rs. 257 and is followed by Rayalaseema with Rs. 225 and the least in the Telangana region with Rs 201. Warangal has the lowest per capita income in the state in 1956 (see table 2.1.6). when compared to the national average of Rs 289 for the year 1955-56, the state income is lower by20 percent. At constant prices of 1980-81, state domestic product has increased from 5218.8 crores in 1972-73 to 7323.95 crores in 1980-81 and to 13776.49 in 1995-96, an increase of 2.6 times over two and half decades. The per capita income at constant prices of 1980-81 was Rs. 1163 in 1972-73 and it increased to Rs.1913 by 1995-96. The increase in per capita income accounts for 1.64 times between 1972-73 and 1995-96.the contribution of agriculture to state domestic product has come down from 49.4 percent in 1955-56 to 43.1 in 1980-81 and 36.5 in 1995-96.


2.2.9.   The district wise incidence of poverty for 1977-78 as shown in Appendix 2.2.7 table indicate that it is more in the Telangana and the Rayalaseema districts as compared to the districts in the coastal Andhra region.


Farmers’s Suicides in Andhra Pradesh :

2.2.10. As mentioned earlier, 37 cotton farmers committed suicides in Guntur and Prakasham districts 1987-88. High power committee headed by Ojha, Deputy Director of Reserve Bank of India submitted a report. The measures suggested include moratorium on the repayment of loans, pegging interest rates, develop pest resistant varieties, providing irrigation facilities, setting up Cotton Regulatory Board. However, they remained unattended to.

2.2.11. When the present phase of farmers’ suicides started reporting in December 1997, the Chief Minister made a visit to Warangal and initiated certain adhoc measures. A relief package worth Rs. 50 crores was announced. Payment of exgratia worth of Rs. 100,000 to deceased families, Rs. 1,250 per hectare of cotton, Rs. 1000 per hectare of red gram, rescheduling of institutional crop loans, enhancing the price of cotton to Rs. 2,200 per quintal. Intervention of CCI and Markfed, farmers’ awareness programmes, local research centre at Warangal have formed part of the package.


2.2.12. The Central Government constituted a high level committee to investigate the reasons for crop failure and suggest measures. It has included pest outbreak as additional norm for treating as national calamity.







3.1.0.          Physical Features :

3.1.1.            Warangal district lies in the North- East part of Andhra Pradesh between the latitudes of 17 -19 and 18-36 degrees North and longitudes 73-49 and 80-43 degree East, covering an area of 12,835.5 sq. The average elevation is 870 peak above sea level.  Warangal district is bounded on the North by the Karimnagar district, on the West by the Medak district, on the South by the Nalgonda district and on the SouthEast by the Khammam district.


Population and Work Force :

3.1.2.   The district has 1004 inhabited and 94 inhabited villages. The population has gone up from 15.4 lakhs in 1961 28.18 lakhs in 1991. The density of the population  rose from 120 per sq.k.m. to 219 during the same period. Rural population, which accounted for 85.90 percent in 1961, has come down to 80.61 percent in 1991.

3.1.3.   There are 12.76 lakh main workers in 1991 and the work force comprises 47.78 percent of the total population. Cultivators numbering 4,13,934 comprise 14.68 percent of the total population. Agricultural labourers out number cultivators with 5,37,236 and comprise of 19.06 percent of the total population. The trend is that over time, number of agricultural workers is increasing faster than that of cultivators. During the last decade, the number of cultivators increased from 2.75 lakhs to 4.14 lakhs, an increase of 50 percent. On the other hand, agricultural labourers increased from 2.98 lakhs to 5.37 lakhs, an increase of 80 percent.

The Growing of Small Farms :

3.1.4.   The growing number of cultivators over the years has brought about considerable change in the size distribution of operational holdings in Warangal district. The number of operational holdings which was 3.05 lakhs in 1976-77has gone up to 4.80 lakhs in 1991, an increase of 57.3 percent. Peculiarly, the area under these holdings has come down slightly from 7.06 lakh ha. to 6.74 lakh ha. during this period. This has resulted in the lowering of average size of holding from 2.31ha. in 1976-77 to 1.40 ha. 1991. Among all the size classes up to 3.4 ha. the number of holding has almost doubled, while the share of the land of these classes has gone up considerably. As could be seen from Appendix table 3.1.1. the number of operational holdings below 5 acres increased from 2,02,947 in 1976-77 to 3,85,488 in 1990-91, an increase of 90 percent. The proportion of small farms of less than 5 acres which was 58 percent in 1961 has gone up to 66.4 percent in 1976-77and to 80.2 percent in 1991. The share of area by this class increased from 22.6 percent to 43.45 percent during the same period. On the other hand, all size classes of above 4-5 ha. witnessed a fall in the absolute number as well as percent of holdings and that of the area. Thus, the district has witnessed the emergence of small farmer based agrarian structure.


3.1.5.   The lack of industrial employment in the district has also placed severe pressure on land and there was acute division and fragmentation of land holdings. Break of joint family system has contributed considerably to this tendency. There ample evidence to show that the caste occupations are on the decline and within the informal sector some of the caste occupants shifted to farming 1. Abolition of zamindari system, distribution of banzar lands and land ceilings have also contributed to this tendency. Decline of forests, and the state policy of promoting agriculture in tribal areas has resulted in land occupations, non- locals in forest areas taking grip on tribal lands.


1. Sudarshan Reddy,A. & Venkateshwar Rao,B. “Caste Occupations Status, Mobility and Informatism- A case study of Ravirala village in Warangal district” - Paper presented at the XI Annual Conference of Andhra Pradesh Economic Association held on 20-21, February, 1993 at Nandyal.


Soils :

3.1.6.   The soil being the important natural resource for raising crops, the nature of soil together with other factors such as temperature, rainfall and availability of irrigation determines productivity and localisation of certain crops. Soils in Warangal are mostly chalka soils (sandy loam) 64 percent and is followed by black soil (regur) 21 percent and dubba (loamy sands) 14 percent. Laterite and other soils constitute 1 percent of the total area. Chalka soils are spread mostly in the erstwhile taluks of Mehboobabad, Warangal, Janagaon and Narsampet. Dubba soils are concentrated in Parkal taluka. As for black cotton soils are concerned, no particular area is totally covered but we find patches of black cotton soils spread here and there. A notable feature in this respect is that most of the settlers from Andhra region have settled on such lands.


3.1.7.   Red soils due to their lighter texture are open and porous to allow excess water to pass through quickly and drain away soluble plant nutrients like nitrate and potash. Their clay has a low moisture retentivity, requiring frequent irrigation or rains for successful growth of crops, therefore, the most important step in the development of red soils is to increase its water holding capacity through good management practices which include constant application of bulky organic and tank silt. The red soils resist the forces of erosion by water and wind better than the heavy texture black soils especially when the latter are poor in the organic matter content. The lighter soils are eminently suited for irrigation and for raising wide variety of crops including root crops and vegetables. Thus, the viewpoint of maintaining optimum physical properties of the soil, for good crop growth, red soils are superior to black soils provided the plant nutrients and moisture status of the soils properly maintained. Crops suffer more from aberrant rainfall in the red soil area because of the poor physical properties such as hard pan in the sub soil and consequent low water holding capacity of these soils. Even during the rainy season, plants grown in red soil show the effects of water stress, if the interval between two rainy spells exceeds 10 days. Thus, if moisture is available in the lower regions of the soil the plants do not benefit because the roots of even deep rooted crops like cotton and sugarcane do not penetrate below 15 to 20 cm depth. On the other hand, black soils due to heavy texture and nature of clay they are highly moisture retentive. The drainage and permeability of these soils, are poor compared to red soils. These soils are more responsive to phosphates much larger than nitrogen. However, combined application of nitrogen and phosphorous gives enormous response. In these soils crops suffer more due to compaction resulting in the poor growth and penetration of roots. Thus, in Warangal district low moisture retention in red soils and low moisture availability in black soils effect crops. As far fertility of the soil is concerned, Warangal has 30 percentage of alkali soils. Nitrogen and phosphorous are of medium type while potash is available more. 2


3.1.8.   An important trend that noticed in respect of soil is texture and fertility. As mentioned earlier, the introduction of improved varieties of rice and hybrid maize has promoted increased use of chemical fertilizers. The emergence of cotton and chilly has further promoted the use of chemical fertilizers pesticides. On the other hand, the traditional practices of recharging nutrients by manure, tank silt, crop rotation system are on the decline. The combined effect is heavy loss of nutrients on one-hand and soil microbes on the other.


Rainfall and Recurring Droughts

3.1.9.   The normal annual rainfall of the district is 1055.7 mm the maximum rainfall occurring in the month of June, July, August and September. The rainy season commences with the on set of South-West monsoon in the later part of the month of June and ends with the month of October with the closure of South-West monsoon. This district is divided into three ranges of rainfall areas. (a) upto 750 mm (b) 751 to 1000 mm (c) 1000 mm and above. The Western and middle part of the district falls in (a) and (b) categories while the Eastern part of the district covering Mulugu and Narsampet fall in (c)category. A comparison of year to year rainfall data do indicate that the occurence of the drought is increasing in the recent past as compared to the distant part. The district is still dependent on rainfed agriculture where 53 percent area still covered under rain-fed crops. For a long period, this district was growing rain-fed crops like jawar, greengram, maize, sesumum groundnut and redgram etc. even in the changed cropping pattern, the commercial crops like cotton is also grown as rain-fed over 60 percent of area.


3.1.10. One important sensitive aspect of district agriculture has been irregular rainfall. Examinations of rainfall data during last 15-year period as given in Appendix table 3.1.2. shows that 7 of the 15 years are falling short of normal rainfall. It is also pertinent to notice that they are occurring in cyclical fashion with 2-3 years of normal years followed by 2-3 years of deficient rainfall. Exceptionally, high rainfall occurred in two years 1983-84 and 1989-90. The recurring droughts have some adverse effect in the area sown but more serious impact is on reduced yields more particularly in food grain crops like rice maize, jowar and pulses like greengram and redgram. In 1980s some extent of area being cultivated under rain-fed crops chilly yields suffered heavily. However, by now more than 90 percent of area under chilly is cultivated under well irrigation. In the recent past, the worst effected crop is that of cotton. Nearly 60 percent of cotton is grown as rain-fed and therefore subjected to vagaries of monsoon. Moreover, cotton is not only confined to black soils butis also spread into red soils. As the nature of the red soils as mentioned earlier is such that they do not possess moisture retentive capacity one or two dry spells are able to badly effect the yield.


3.1.11.            Delayed monsoons, particularly in the month of June are badly effecting sowing operations of certain crops like greengram, sesamum and groundnut. The delayed sowings of these crops is resulting in yield losses to the extent of 50 to 60 percent. Under the influence of the delayed monsoons the very nature of cropping pattern has undergone considerable change and in the recent past the balance moved in favour of the cotton. Indeed a great shift of burden too. Thus, the cotton is subjected to vagaries of monsoon. This apart, the falling number of rainy days and increasing number of dry spells has become a cause of great concern in the recent past. Each dry spell will take away 5 to 10 percent of yield in respect of cotton. Another changing phenomenon noticed during the last few years is relatively more rainfall in the months of October and November, which will have an adverse effect on some crops like cotton, rice and red-gram.


Trends in Irrigation :

3.1.12.            Warangal district which should have been predominantly a dry farming area like the rest of Telangana was converted into a granary for rice by the Kakatiya rulers who built some best irrigation works which stood the test of time are the Pakhal, Ramappa and Laknavaram lakes some 700 years ago. In 1960-61 net area irrigated in the district has been 2.41 lakh acres which comprised 24.4 percent of total net area sown of  9,91,628 acres. By 1994-95, the proportion of net area irrigated to net area sown has gone up to 56 percent and that of proportion of gross irrigated area to gross cropped area to 50.9 percent.


Sources of Irrigation :

3.1.13. The main sources of irrigation in the district are rain-fed tanks, lakes, wells and hill streams. Particulars of sources of irrigation over time are given in Appendix table 3.1.3. In 1960-61, rain-fed tanks and lakes irrigated 78.6 percent of the total irrigated area. Irrigation under wells that were primarily operated by mhotes(indigenous lift by bullocks) was about 16.8 percent. The remaining 4.6 percent area was irrigated by other sources. PWD maintained tanks (with each capacity of more than 100 acres) have gone up from 449 in 1963-64 to 706 in 1978-79 and to 786 in 1994-95. Similarly, minor tanks maintained by Panchayat Raj (of each with less than 100 acres capacity) have gone from 2789 to 3882 and to 3910 for the respective years. Today they had a potential of one lakh ha. Inspite of the fact that the number of tanks increased, the relative share of tanks began to fall from the early period itself. By 1967-68, the relative importance of the tanks decreased to 67.9 percent while that of wells increased to 22.1 percent. Lack of adequate investments on tanks, poor maintenance, breaches, siltation etc. have reduced the irrigation capacities of tanks and its share began to fall further.

Growing Importance of Well Irrigation :

3.1.14. The severe drought that occurred in mid-sixties and introduction of new agricultural technology particularly rice and the policy of the government to promote rural electrification have all prompted the farmers to invest in private well irrigation development. The minor irrigation development schemes launched by the government and the expended credit facilities for this purpose have also contributed for the growing importance and growth of well irrigation in the district. Within a short span, the number of wells increased from 31,159 in 1963-64 to 85,225 in 1976-77 to 1,41,161 by 1980-81 and to about two lakhs in 1994-95. Not only that number of wells increased, but the mode of water drafting has also undergone a metamorphosis. Energisation of wells, which was commenced on small scale with oil engines and electric motors, has gone up considerably from the middle of sixties. In 1980-81 there were 21,177 oil engines and 27,383 electric motors pumpsets. However, by 1993 the number of the electric pumpsets increased to 1,41,292. Such a change has reflected in a shift in the importance of wells over tanks. By 1982-83, the place of tanks was leading but the relative importance of wells has gone up considerably to around 40 percentage in the total irrigated area. By 1994-95, well irrigation accounted for 64 percent of the gross irrigated area in the district.


Ground Water Potential :

3.1.15. The early experience of green revolution in India has shown that irrigation, credit and marketing extension services are essential components for the success of the green revolution. In a semi-arid area like Warangal the water requirements were to be met predominantly from the ground water.  Paddy being a water            intensive crop, requires greater amounts of water. No doubt rural electrification has come to harness the ground water and also that the state policy of supplying the motor pumpsets and to develop wells through SFDA/DRDA have helped in tapping the ground water. The Techno-Economic Survey of Andhra Pradesh published in 1962 by NCAER(3) mentions that the scopes for large-scale exploitation of ground water is absent, as the substrata are trap or granite, incapable of yielding prolific ground water supplies. But, there are many tracts and peneplains spread out at various places of the region where the sub soil water level is fairly high and where a cluster of wells can be sunk for lift irrigation.


            According to one estimate made in 1982 “the total dynamic ground water recharge for Warangal district was worked out as 2139 million cum. This is 16 percent of the average annual rainfall of the district. The North-Eastern part of the district has higher dynamic ground water resources than the rest of the district, but being forest clad has less area for ground water development”.  “Barring the hilly and forested areas and barren lands only 64 percent of the dynamic ground water reserves of the district are available for utilisation, the proportion ranging from 12.7 percent in Parkal taluk to 96 percent in Mulugu taluk. It was suggested that ground water balances can be developed by 85, 208 open wells (annual draft of each 0.0123 million cum) and 1998 tube wells (annual draft of each 0.162 million cum)”.  Ground water department’s mandal wise and basin wise estimations of additional wells feasible with pumpsets show that most of the potential is concentrated in several mandals on the North-Eastern part of the district viz. Bhupalpally, Eturnagaram, Mulugu Ghanpur, Khanapur, Mulugu, Tadwai, Venkatapur.  On the SouthEast side Korivi, Dornakal, Kesamudram, Mehaboobabad, Maripeda, Nellikudur have shown to have potential. In the rest of the mandals, the potential appears to be very low to marginal ranges. Even in these areas, the potential can be harnessed only by going to greater depth involving more investment for digging.

Falling Ground Water Levels :

3.1.16. As well irrigation constitutes two thirds of net irrigated area under all sources in the district and that the number of pumpsets are on the rise, an important factor in this connection refers to the changes in water table. Between 1983-84 and 1994-95 there is a net fall in the ground water level to the extent of 1.04 metres in Warangal district. However, there are inter-year variations. Of the total nine yearly observations, there is a fall in the water level in five years, and these are incidentally drought years. The fall in the water level ranged between the lowest of 0.87 metres to the highest of 3.28 metres in four other years an increase is noticed. But this increase is mostly confined to the normal rainfall years.


3.1.17. The departmental estimates of ground water level fluctuations between 1994-97 also show that water level depletion occurred in almost all parts of the district. In Janagon and Cheriyal, Kodakandla, Ghanpur (station) erstwhile taluks, the depth ranges of wells range from 10 to 15 mts and depth of water levels observed in those wells ranges from 9 to 14 mts. and that of water levels in the wells between 8 and 13 mts. The general depletion of ground water level is between 1 to 2 mts. during the last 3 years. If we observe this phenomenon in the light of past experience, it is a departure. Hitherto at least normal years have contributed for an increase in the ground water level in the wells. Last three years are no doubt normal years but peculiarly water levels gone down inspite of normal rainfall. If we take note of the following drought year in 1997-98, the problem could have become much more serious and thus contributed for severe crisis in agriculture in the district. Apart from this increase in the number of drought years during the last 15-year period, a factor, which is responsible for decrease in the ground water table, is the neglect of tanks. The present status of  irrigation tanks in the Warangal district is quite pathetic.  Not less than 50 percent of small tanks are almost non-existing either due to illegal occupations or permanent breaches etc.  In rest of the cases, the water retention capacity has been reduced on account of siltation in the landbed, the growth of weeds and acacia arabica and erosion of community interest on maintenance of tanks. Due to this neglect not only that irrigated area declined but also they have become a cause for lower replenishment of ground water. On the other hand, as already mentioned under the impetus of energisation of pumpsets, the rate of ground water draft has increased considerably. In certain parts of the district, over congestion of  wells in smaller areas has also become a source of fast depletion of ground water.


3.1.18. The recommended spacing of wells for minimum interference is 130 mts. in case of weathered granite sandstone and shale rock areas and 220 mts. in case of alluvium soils, and 300 mts incase of fractured weathered granite sandstone, dolomite and shale. As against this prospect, the actual number of wells energised  far exceeds the suggested one. As many as 1,65,000 motors are in operation today, the draft levels have been far exceeding the recharge, with the result, the water depth ranges have gone down considerably necessitating in well bores. A survey of 1989 ground water has classified not less than 469 villages in the district as dark areas in respect of ground water. This is the highest number when compared to  most of the district in the state. Even the latest survey of 1992 has also declared 464 villages as classified in to white, Grey and dark area villages depending upon the extent of utilisation of ground water. The subsequent drought might have worsened this situation. Further, the study has also revealed that as per mandal level assessment Buchannapet and Duggondi mandals fall in the dark category involving about 22 villages. However, if we go by basin-wise assessment, dark areas fall under Janagaon, Buchannapet, Ghanpur (station), Cherial, Maddur and Zaffergadh covering 20 villages.


3.1.19. Well irrigation development has been mostly financed from private sources. Public participation was only to the extent of about 25 percent in form of subsidy and loan component from the scheduled banks and co-operatives. Deepening of open wells has been almost a continuous activity. The process of in-well bores has been taken up effectively since early eighties and even continued till today. In many instances loans sanctioned for wells were proved quite insufficient (50 percent). The farmers have taken recourse to borrowing from private sources to meet the short fall. The periodic deepening of wells has placed heavy burden on the farmers. The rate of success of in-well bores is hardly less than one-third. The failure of wells and in-well bores has thrown the farming community into the debt trap more particularly, the small and marginal farmers. Expecting, good returns from cotton crop, farmers did not mind to go for higher investment in the development of well irrigation.


Shifts in Cropping Pattern :

3.1.20. An important aspect of changing district agriculture is that of shift in the cropping pattern. Data contained in Appendix Table 3.1.4. shows that in the early sixties, rice, jowar occupied first place in area accounting for 41 percent of the total cropped area in the district. The next in order is rice occupying about 23 percent. Jowar yield per acre being quite meagre, rice becomes a predominant crop in terms of out turn and value. Groundnut, castor and sesamum are the principal commercial crops. Among non- food crops, chilly account for 7000 acres cotton was grown in about 3000 acres, tobacco in 4000 acres. Among pulses green gram is predominant and occupies third place in respect of area covered under it. They account for about 19 percent in the total.


3.1.21. Rice was grown mostly under tank irrigation. As minor tanks were not so dependable. Rice yields were low and were subjected to wide fluctuations. With the introduction of the high yielding varieties of rice in mid-sixties and development of well irrigation through energisation of pumpsets, this crop got an impetus particularly in mid seventies. Most of the dry areas have been converted in to rice growing areas with well irrigation and emerged as a predominant irrigated dry area crop. Groundnut, which was grown exclusively under rainfed conditions in Kharif in the early period, has emerged as an important irrigated dry crop in the Rabi from early seventies to mid eighties. Its place was reduced to some extent with the introduction of sunflower in mid eighties. By the beginning of the nineties, the premier place is occupied by cotton. Rapid growth in energisation of pumpsets and growing importance of well irrigation has resulted in fall in ground water levels. This necessitated deepening of wells and recourse to in-well bores. The periodic occurence of droughts particularly three-year drought period in the early nineties coupled with acute power shortages made the rice cultivation more difficult. With the result, the area under rice under well irrigation has been declining from the early nineties. In the search for less water intensive crops and economic crops too, they found an alternative in cotton.


3.1.22. As mentioned earlier, statistics show that cotton has been grown in about 3000 to 4000 acres in the sixties. However, the Andhra settlers from Guntur on the black soil patches have started their agriculture mostly depending on commercial crops like chilly, tobacco and cotton. In the early seventies, they started growing cotton extensively with local varieties of MCU5 LRA, LK, Varalaxmi Cotton seeds. The study of Dr. A.Sudarshan Reddy has worked out the economics of two commercial crops of chilly and cotton and found high elasticity showing greater price responsiveness and indicated that these two crops will grow in the district under the successful demonstration effect of these settled areas. From early eighties and onwards, chilly crop gained prominence where area under chilly has been doubled by 1987-88 (34,000 acres). For some time, this crop gained some momentum but soon it was realised that it was quite a risky crop more on account of severe pest attack on one hand and periodic fluctuations in the market prices for this crop. In order to mnimise the crop risk , farmers switched over to cotton from this crop as well. Further, the prices of maize, jowar, green gram were not being remunerative, farmers found an alternative in cotton which has been earning good returns in the initial phases. As a result of these factors the area under cotton has been continuously raising during the last decade and by 1997-98, the area under cotton has phenomenally increased to an all time high of 1.23 lakh ha. Now it is grown both under irrigated and un-irrigated conditions. The cotton grown under irrigations has gone up from 21,882 ha. in 1986-87 to 31,540 ha. in 1994-95 and to about 50,000 ha. in 1997-98. Thus, cotton has emerged  as the principal crop in the district agriculture. Apart from this, the cotton has emerged as monoculture. Even small farmers who constitute bulk in the total, placed their reliance on cash crops with out realising that it entails the gamble. The rising trend in cotton can also be explained from the fact that since 1991-92 there was considerable increase in the cotton arrivals in the Warangal market. During the last four years it has been rising in the order of 5.72 lakh quintals in 1993-94 to 6.76 lakh quintals in 1994-95, 11.35 lakh quintals in 1995-96 and to 13.38 lakh quintals in 1996-97.


Use  of   Modern  Inputs-Seeds :

3.1.23. The orientation of cropping pattern towards rice and other commercial crops like chilly and cotton has raised dependence on purchased inputs like seeds, fertilizers, pesticides and other machinery and tools like, tractors, power sprayers etc. In case of rice, Hyv seeds have replaced all the traditional varieties by 1975. However, farmer’s dependence for Hyv seeds for rice has been entirely on public agencies like NSC and AP seeds, Department of agriculture. As mentioned earlier, cotton emerged as the principal crop in the district during the year 1997-98. Modern cultivation of cotton started by Andhra settlers in Warangal, way back in 1971 to 76. Major varieties used by them include H4, Geeja and Varalaxmi in cotton. Other indigenous varieties, which have become popular in the later periods, include MCU5, LRA, LK 861, JKH4 which are now almost out dated. In the subsequent period, public hybrids like MECH 1, NSC 1 and Savitha were in use for some time before RCH 2-hybrid variety become popular during the last three years. Today, it accounts for 90 percent of the total cropped area under cotton. In other 10 percent of area some hybrid varieties like Somnath, MCH 5, MCH 144 are in use. Brahma, anitha and sanju are in the prospective list of varieties. During the last two- three years, the heavy demand for RCH 2 has compelled the state machinery to regularise the supply. However, the auction system introduced in the villages for the supply of RCH 2 has raised the cost of seed to be around Rs. 1200 to 1500 per bag. In case of chilly also the dependence of seeds is on private sources of supply. There is a free play of forces in regard to the choice of variety of seeds. In the absence of state regulation of seed supply, there have been reports of crop failures on account of lack of quality and adulteration.


            The hybrid varieties which are in use at present are of long duration and more responsive to fertilizers but are more pest- prone. They can not with stand to the dry spells of more than 15 days and hence requires assured irrigation. Moreover the scientists opine that the short duration variety of cotton is suitable for the low rainfall and shallow soil of Telangana while long duration varieties are suitable to areas with assured irrigation. By the very nature, these varieties require better irrigation, heavy investments and better insecticide management. This way cotton is subjected to more risks and uncertainties. The dwindling rainfall conditions, proneness to several insects like Aphids, Jassids, Thrips and Whitefly and fluctuating prices are the major factors, which entail risk. In view of this success of this crop depends on scientific management than any other traditional crop. Choosing right type of soil, right type of seed, ability to identify the pests, application of suitable pesticides at right dosage and right time, providing irrigation crucial stages, and provision of constant attention are some of the prerequisites of cultivating this crop. That being the prerequisites, the experience in  Warangal, stands divergent from them. Agricultural scientists opined that the red soils are not advisable for growing cotton crop but more than 50 percent of present cotton is grown on such soils with out making any effort to improve the soil structure by organic materials and tank silt etc. Other important deviation is in the selection of seeds where entire area is covered with long duration varieties. The present pattern of cultivating the cotton under rain-fed conditions on red soils has turned out to be quite inimical. In the beginning, the settlers used to cultivate this crop in the black soils under rain-fed conditions. Without knowing the implications, the local farmers started raising this crop on red soils even. As for the choice of the seeds are concerned, the seed suppliers lead farmers in the village have influenced considerably. Network of sub-dealers in different areas in the district played crucial role.


Fertilizers :

3.1.24.            Increased irrigation cultivation and the consequent expansion of crop area under rice, chilly and cotton have placed heavy demand for fertilizers. with slight variations in the use of chemical fertilizers, the average level of use of chemical fertilizers per acre of rice varies between 1 to 2 bags of complex fertilizers and 2 bags of urea. This works out be an average consumption of 160 kg per acre. In the case of chilly under irrigation conditions, it varies between 6 to 8 bags per acre. Under unirrigated conditions, it varies between 3 to 6 bags depending upon the periodicity of rainfall. In the case of cotton, the average consumption is 8 bags under irrigation conditions. Under unirrigated conditions, it is around 4 to 5 bags. When compared to the predominance of rain-fed crops like jowar, green gram, sesmum etc. the changed cropping pattern has increased the use of chemical fertilizers. As these fertilizers are to be purchased from the market, they needed more cash. Such a growing demand has given scope for establishment of more fertilizer dealers throughout the district. The registered dealers increased from 500 in 1980 to 1,200 in 1998. It is evident that the rapid increase in the number of dealers is more owing to the increased cultivation of chilly in the beginning and cotton in the later period. Since the supply is left entirely to the private sector, artificial scarcity of specific varieties, adulteration and under-weighment are some of the problems faced by the farming community in the district. Farmer’s associations have fought for regularisation of seed supply of specific popular variety.


Growing  Reliance  on  Insecticides :

3.1.25. The very nature of Hyv seeds being pest-prone, farmers started using pesticides from the very beginning of introduction of Hyv varieties in rice. However, the extent of pesticides used was not that high. Chilly and cotton are more risky and require greater pest management. In normal practice, farmers are accustomed for dusting and spraying once in five to six days, without regard to whether pest is there are not. That means between July to December not less than 20 to 25 sprayings will be done. The average consumption under irrigation conditions varies between 4 litres to 5 litres per acre. Under un-irrigated conditions it varies between 3 liters to 4 liters per acre. With the growth of commercial crops in the district, the number of pesticide dealers and sub-dealers have also gone up considerably. During the last 10 years period the number of sub- dealers has gone up from about 300 to 1300.  Today every major village has one or two sub-dealers as minimum. Erstwhile taluk headquarters today have become major centres of distribution of fertilizers and pesticides. As with the number of sub-dealers, the quantity of pesticides sold has also gone up multifold. At present the total sale of technical grade pesticides is estimated to be around 800 metric tons per annum in the district. Per acre consumption of pesticides is estimated to be around 2.31kgs. This is no doubt considered to be more compared to the normal. 


3.2.26. The system is evolved in such a way that the pesticide dealer himself assumes the role of extension agency. However, he is more guided by the profit and greater sales, particularly of those varieties which give more commission and which are more powerful. Farmers have been depending more on the dealer for the type of pesticides to be used when there is a pest attack or else he obtains information from his neighbouring farmer. In the process, gullible farmers used pesticides indiscriminately and excessively. As farmers in large number could not possess enough cash, were tied to a dealer for obtaining pesticides on credit. This weakness being exploited by the pesticide dealer in several ways charging 15 to 20 percent price extra, supplying unwanted high priced pesticides and supply of spurious and adulterated pesticides taking advantage of the desperate need of the farmers. The commercial crops have been introduced with out proper knowledge in regard to the type of pests which attack the crop and what kind of the pesticides are to be used at what dose. There is also lacuna in the administrative mechanism where right information is not being extended to the farming community. The emergence of monoculture practices has also contributed for uncontrolled spread of pests. The constant use of heavy doses of pesticides like synthetic pyrathroids has resulted in a greater resistance among the pests. Not only that it has resulted in killing of predators but contributed for reduction of soil productivity. The problem has become so intense that even the traditional crops, which used to give better yields without application of fertilizer and pesticides are no longer able to survive without the use of fertilizers and pesticides. Local research has clearly brought out the extent of soil degradation and the extent of loss due to this degradation, which is compounded because of excessive use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides.


3.2.27. It is generally felt in the agricultural scientific community that the heavy doses like pyrethroids were used right in the beginning instead of using as a last resort. This is because once the heavy doses are used in the early period, there is every possibility that the minor doses will not work later. This, many farmers do not know and there was none to explain  about the scientific method of use of pesticides.


Extension  Service :

3.2.28. The district has an agricultural research station but cotton research is not in its agenda. It has evolved 2,3 rice varieties, which have caught the attention of the farmers and practiced. The department of agriculture has a network of agricultural officers locating at the mandal headquarters and VDOs locating at cluster level of villages. However, this personnel is said to be inadequate to perform the extension services in the required level. It is also noted that the administrative work is burdening the available staff and they find no time to provide extension services. During the last two years the department has conducted several “Rytu Sadassulu”  (farmer’s meets) to educate them on matters of scientific agriculture and Integrated Pest Management etc. here has been some response to these meetings but the practice is not in commensurate to the inputs.


Agricultural  Practices :

3.2.29. For several years, the farming community has been used to bulky organic manure like the farm yard manure of cattle, sheep and goats and tank silt. A major part of it normally used for rice crop and commercial crops preferably with irrigation facility. Cattle population has declined from 9,13,349 in 1983 to 7,35,018 in 1993. On the other the population of buffaloes has gone up slightly from 3,59,538 to 4,15,650 during the same period. Whatever little manure is available is being used in the case of rice. The use of tank silt has been almost discontinued. Therefore, the inorganic chemical fertilizers came to be applied more and with commercial crops it became much more popular. 


3.2.30.            Traditionally, wooden ploughs did ploughing operations. Though iron ploughs are introduced, they are not in wide practice some of the farm operations are being performed with the help of tractors ploughing and harvesting operations. Between 1987 and 1995, the number of tractors increased from 1008 to 1980. Marked change is noticed in respect of lift irrigation where ‘Mhote’ was the primary means of lifting water is being totally replaced by electric power pumpsets. New practices are also introduced in respect of dusters and power sprayers. The number of dusters and sprayers increased from 12,109 in 1987 to 35,269 by 1994-95.


3.2.31. For sustained yields and increasing income traditionally crop rotation was  practiced. It was arranged in such a fashion that the soil fertility is maintained in the process. Jowar was being rotated with ground nut and green gram. Groundnut was rotated by maize. Raising of multiple crops was supposed to provide security against risk and as well as control of pests. Jowar and red gram, groundnut and red gram, groundnut and green gram, ground nut and lentil, groundnut and castor were some of the combinations. Crop diversification was  yet another traditional practice. They have been combined in such a way as to meet grain requirements for the family and farm workers and fodder to the cattle and to earn the cash. It used to provide a balance between these requirements so as to mitigate the risk of crop failures. As against this, in a majority of cases, cotton has acquired monoculture and wherever is endowed with more ground water has extended diversification only to rice. Thus, these two crops have emerged on the agrarian scene of the district.



Non-pesticides  Management (NPM) :

3.1.31. there are two experiences of controlling pests through non-pestcidal measures in the district. Centre for Rural Operation Programmes Society (CROPS) based at Janagaon has experimented with cotton and pigeon pea in Wanaparthy village in Lingal Ghanpur  mandal during the last two years. Similar experience is available in Parvathagiri (M) being organised by Modern Architects for Rural India. In both the experiments the similar yields were achieved with biological methods at least cost on pest control. In the first case, the experiment was conducted on rain-fed cotton where the yield was 425 kg per hectare under NPM with Rs 300 cost. On the other hand in Non -NPM area yield was 350 kg with pesticide cost of Rs 1312. In the second case, yields of 8.9 quintals were obtained with marginal expenditure of Rs 800/ - per acre as against Rs 3000/- among others with pesticides use. Such experience needs to be adopted by the farming community as a measure of cost control and minimise pest resistance. As a minimum, some such low cost changes in farm practices were certainly possible.



Credit :

3.1.32. The changing agriculture with reference to increasing irrigation, commercialisation of cropping pattern, growing dependence on the purchased inputs and monetisation of the district agriculture enhanced the demand for agricultural credit. In the early phase, there were attempts to shift from informal credit to institutional credit through co- operatives. By 1983, the number of co-operatives has gone up to 371 and to 540 in 1984-85. However, the reorganisation of co-operative credit structure in to a single window delivery system, the co-operatives has been reorganised into 167 primary agricultural credit societies. In 1984-85, the agricultural credit societies were able to advance an amount of Rs 13.41 crores. By 1995-96, the co-operatives were able to advance a credit of only 15.65 cr. Co-operatives suffer from growing over dues, inadequate and untimely supply of credit. Many a times, the PACS adjust the old dues against the fresh loans for purpose of showing better recovery. The authorities of FSCS say that even when facility of loan adjustment is extended, farmers are not coming forward to avail this facility for the reason of expected future loan waiver. A study on over dues by A.Sudarshan Reddy 6 identify main reasons to be social expences accounting for about 60 percent, depletion of ground water in trhe wells 20 percent and expectation of future loan waiver 20 percent. On the other hand, the performance of Kakatiya Grameena Bank (KGB) is relatively better in terms of recovery, amount of average advancement etc. In 1966, KGB was able to supply only 7.66 crores. All the commercial banks, cooperative central bank and KGB together had a plan to supply total credit worth of 83.40 crores in 1996 in the district. A decadal comparison of total credit supply by all the agencies put together has been presented in table 3.1.5. The table shows that the credit supply came down from 52 crores in 1988-89 to about 30 crores in 1991-92. However, in the later years, it was able to recover slightly and the maximum lending was about 67 crores in 1996-97. Crop loans accounted for greater share (of about 60 to 80 percent). The table also shows that the achievements were all the time falling short of the targets. The overall percentage of achievement varied between 47 percent as the lowest to about 95 percent as highest. The over due position though relatively better than the co-operatives, the commercial banks experienced increased over due position over the period. Studies have also brought out clearly that the credit limits fixed by the commercial banks were relatively more than the KGB and co-operatives.


3.1.33. What is pertinent is to know how far the amount supplied by all the institutional agencies put together are sufficient to fulfill the farm credit needs in the district. Warangal district has a Rs. 80 crore annual credit plan aimed at helping small and marginal peasants who constitute the majority. The district Collector, however, said she had serious doubts about whether this amount actually disbursed this year. Banks have reduced loan disbursal on liberal terms due to poor recoveries. There are no clear estimates made with regard to the demand for the credit over the years. During the last decade, if we go by the real forces operating the credit demand and the credit supply by the institutions in real terms, the credit supply falls short of the credit demand. Assuming a constant cropping pattern, there were major increases in the prices of fertilzers, pesticides, seeds, power, labour and agricultural machinery have gone up by more than 100 percent. The credit supply in real terms would be less than 50 percent of what is being supplied in 1988-89. If we take in to consideration the real factor of phenomenal increase in cotton cultivation from about 50,000 acres to about 3 lakh acres and the consequential use of increased doses of fertilizers and pesticides, the credit demand would have gone up by more than several folds. From these crude observations, it could be surmised that the credit supply in the farm sector in the district has been inadequate.

3.1.34. Based on paid out costs worked out for major crops in the district for 1997-98 as given in chapter IV the total short term credit requirement would be of the order of more than 385 crores. The credit requirement for the different crops would be Rs. 300 crores for cotton (for an expected area of 3 lakh acres) Rs. 40 crores for chilly (for an expected area of 3 lakh acres) Rs. 25 crores for rice (with an expected area of 50,000 acres) Rs. 20 crores for maize (with an expected area of 50,000 acres). As against this, short-term credit requirement, the actual supply of crop loan is around 60 crores in 1997-98. From this gap, one can understand the dimension of credit from non-institutional sources.


Productivity Trends:

3.1.35. The experience of green revolution in the rice growing areas exhibited increases in the productivity as measured in physical yields per acre. Crop yield data provided in APP table 3.1.6 shows that even in the early period between 1955-56 and 1967-68 yield of rice is more than doubled from 220kgs to 528kgs per acre. The development of dwarf and fertilizer-responsive rice varieties like jaya, hamsa, IR-8 has opened up new vistas in the yield of rice in the district. Better and dependable source of irrigation as ensured by well irrigation together with increased use of fertilizers and pesticides and Hyv seeds has no doubt improved the yield position of rice. In general, per acre yields have been more in the rice areas under well irrigation than tankfed areas. Other important aspect is the Rabi yields are more than Kharif yields under well irrigation conditions. Therefore, the development of well irrigation has substantially contributed to yield increases. As compared to the yield rates in 1960-61, yields obtained in early eighties are 90 percent higher. Further jump in increased yields is noticed in the first part of 1990’s.This is mostly attributable to increased proportion of well irrigation, greater use of fertilizers, pesticides and better management. It is also noticeable that year to year variations are occurring more owing to the rainfall conditions and water in the tanks than the management conditions which have become more or less common.


3.1.36. In the early phases, groundnut was cultivated only in Kharif and the yields were quite low per acre. Yield, which was at 218 kgs per acre, has been gone up to 294 kgs by 1967-68. With the development of well irrigation, the area under groundnut increased substantially and emerged as an important Rabi crop. It is generally observed that Rabi yields are 50 percent higher than Kharif. In the absence of Hyv varieties in the case of groundnut in the district, the yield increases are more attributable to thee development of well irrigation.


3.1.37. Chilly is another crop, which has been traditionally grown in certain pockets with local varieties, has witnessed substantial change with the introduction of improved varieties particularly in the early 1970s.  As compared to past, 1980s witnessed some increase in the yields but 1990s witnessed a major shift on upper side.  However, there are inter-year variations more owing to weather conditions and occurrence of pests and diseases.  This crop is more vulnerable to the above factors.  Therefore, it has become a volatile one.  In the very recent past, the area under chilly declined for this reason.  Coming to the cotton, yield data is not being recorded in the public records therefore, on the basis of information collected from the experienced farmers over last two decade period show that cotton yields have gone up with the introduction of Hyv seeds particularly since mid-eighties.  The average yield of cotton is around 10 quintals per acre.  However, wide variations are noticed from farm to farm ranging between 1 quintal to 15 quintals per acre.  These variations are primarily due to soil structure, extent of water facilities, pest management etc.  As Cotton is cultivated under irrigated and unirrigated conditions, yield differentials are also recorded where irrigated cotton yields are 60 percent higher in the former than the later.  Of course unirrigated cotton is subject to vagaries of monsoon and therefore year to year yield fluctuations are occurring.  The present varieties of cotton more particularly RCH2 are more susceptible to the pest attack and therefore yield depends more on the pest control.  It is also observed that the yields are falling over the years on account of practice of cotton monoculture.  It affects the yield on account of reduced soil resistance to pests and loss of fertility and destruction of Eco-friendly insects.


3.1.37.            Traditionally, maize has been grown both as kharif and Rabi Crop.  However, in Rabi, it is grown as irrigated crop.  The use of local variety of seeds under the prevailing conditions of farming yielded less.  However, the introduction and popularisation of Hyvs since 1970s have shown the promise of higher yield and it emerged as a competing crop in Rabi.  The average yield being 270 kgs per acre in 1960-61, has shot up too 554 kgs per acre in 1985-86 and to 986 kgs in 1994-95 Factors contributing to high yields are Hyv seeds, increased use of fertilizers, pesticides, better irrigation and supervision.


3.1.38. Green gram is a traditional crop grown largely in this district.  However, the yield per hectare was quite low in 1950s and 1960s.  With adoption of improved varieties, the yields have gone up slightly by 1980s.  This is a crop grown exclusively in Kharif.  Its yields very much depend upon the early onset of monsoon in the first week of June.  Inspite of low yield, this crop has been raised as a rotation crop.  Jowar was a major crop in thte district in the early period.   Infact between 1955-56 and 1967-68 it increased from 3.39 lakh acre to 4.34 lakh acres.  Yields were quite low.  It increased from 152 kgs per acre in 1955-56 to 178 kgs in 1967-68.  Thereafter, the introduction of Hybrid jowar improved the yield considerably where it almost doubled.

Agricultural Prices:

3.1.39. Prices of agricultural commodities are crucial from the point of view of returns and affecting changes in the cropping pattern.  In a subsistence economy, the price responsiveness is expected to be quite less.  However, in Warangal district during the last two decades we notice a change in the attitude of farmers too affect changes in the crop area based on the price advantage.   Under, the influence of prices, jowar in the first phase and Groundnut and maize in the second phase are replaced by rice, sunflower, and ultimately in favour of the commercial crops of chilly and cotton.  The particulars of prices of some important crops have been given during the last decade in the Appendix Table 3.1.7.  The table reveals two important features i.e. a rising trend on one hand and fluctuations on the other.  The Table shows that in respect of rice the price per quintal was Rs. 269 in Kharif and Rabi in 1982-83.  Thereafter, prices have been fallen considerably upto 1990-91.  However, since then they have been constantly rising.  It is the price advantage that rice enjoyed as related too maize and jowar, there was a considerable shift towards the cultivation of rice, of course, yield increasing varieties and improved irrigation facilities have added to this.  Maize is an important crop which has shown greater increase in yield, is subjected to very frequent fluctuations in the prices, though they have shown uptrend over three years.  By and large, prices in Rabi are relatively higher when compared to Kharif.  Groundnut is the other crop, which has shown no doubt a rising trend during the last 15 years, but we can also notice periodic fluctuations in the price of groundnut.  Sometimes month to month price variation was of the order of more than Rs. 200.

3.1.40. In the case of commercial crops we notice wide fluctuations.  In case of chilly no definite trend is discernible.  The fact is that in the first three years, it came down from Rs. 1664 to Rs. 1243 by 1991.  There is a sudden jump there after for two years.  But, in the following year 1993-94 the price reached all time low during the last decade.  The following two years 1994-95, 1995-96, showed an up trend but 1996-97 again recorded a lower price.  Thus, the price fluctuations in respect of chilly are quite frequent and wide.  As could be seen in Table 3.18 price fluctuations are far and wide even on monthly basis.  It is because of this volatile nature of prices in the recent past that there has been a decline in the area under chilly cultivation.  A major reason attributed for such wide fluctuations is that of changes in demand from other countries.  Cotton price, which was about Rs. 500 in 1975-76, has gradually risen to a level of Rs. 786 by 1988-89.  The prices more or less remained stable during next two years.  But there was a sudden spurt in the price of cotton in 1991-92 showing an upward position at Rs. 1233.  In the next year, it fell to a level of about 1000.  In the next two years it again went up but thereafter the prices have fallen marginally.   Thus, we find no doubt a fluctuating price trend but the fluctuations are not so wide and frequent as the chilly are.  It is also pertinent to notice fluctuations on the monthly basis with in the peak season between December and February.  It is during the last 5 years that we notice very frequent changes even on day to day basis and subjected to price fluctuations.

3.1.41. When we compare market prices with that of support price in respect of cotton, we notice a marked difference.  The market price was more by Rs. 600 in 1994-95, Rs. 400 in 1995-96, Rs. 188 in 1996-97 and about Rs. 100 in the early part of 1997-98.  From this, it is clear that over the period, the gap between the market price and the support price is narrowing year to year.  Price fluctuations are attributed to changes in national and international forces.  However, it is not understandable as to what makes the price to vary day to day or month to month particularly during peak arrivals.  One of the important observations made in this regard is the actual prices have been quite less than the expected prices by the farmers.  This has become a source of frustration and agony resulting in periodic protests from the farmers’ organistions during the last three years.

3.1.42. Apart from price, farmers experienced several problems in the marketing of these products.  Grading, Weighment delayed payments in cash, excess collections and periodic closure of markets etc.  Farmers organisations realised the problems of marketing and they started agitations have no doubt, were able to minimise the day problems they face but could not succeed in getting a fair price.  In view of the unprecedented deaths as a short-term measure the govt. intervened to increase the price from the prevailing market price of Rs. 1700 to Rs. 2200.  Even at this juncture of crisis, it is paradoxical that buyers have with drawn from purchases for more than 20 days on some pretext or the other and denying the opportunity of selling their produce.


Rural Indebtedness :

3.1.43. S. Kesava Iyengars’ Economic Investigations in the Hyderabad State (1929-30) gives an account of rural indebtedness in Warangal district.  Fifty four percent of total 2203 families owed debts and the average debt per indebted family was Rs.  180-6-2 and Rs. 10 per resident family.  The estimates also show that 43 percent of the total non-land mortgage debt was productive debt. The identified main causes for debt include household expenses, cultivation expenses, marriage expenses, accumulation, non-agricultural business, land revenue payment.  Keshava Iyengars study  (1949-51) estimated the average debt for resident family to be Rs. 169-6-0 for warangal district.  Taking all debts in too consideration, 31.4 percent was due to professional moneylenders, 38.3 percent for cultivating non-professional moneylenders.  The average indebtedness per acre was RS. 10-5-0 in Warangal district.  The ratio of debt to the value of land worked out at 24.6 percent.  The Debt and Investment surveys till today ha e clearly brought out that the debt burden is increasing over time.  Some studies have also revealed that the debt burden is inversely related to farm size.  The study of K.S. Suryanarayana (1962-65) estimated the average debt to be Rs. 608 for Telangana region.  The average debt of small, medium and large farms constituted 8.36 percent. 6.69 percent and 2.73 percent of the total value of assets respectively.  The unirrigated small and large farms had correspondingly higher proportion of debt as compared to irrigated farm size groups.


Farmer’s Protection Movement in Warangal :

3.1.44. While there have been the semblance of protests from the farming community on several issues concerning them since long, a special reference need to be made with regard to the emergence and growth of a voluntary, farmers’ Associations called Rytu Seva Samithi few years ago.  It is in fact the growing agrarian crisis and distress that has given rise to a movement. It started with protection against substandard starters, adulterated seeds, pesticides, unremunerative prices, irregular power supply and problems of marketing etc.


3.1.45. Mass protests, dharnas, bandhs have become the regular features of the movement.  It has been focussing the farmers’ problems in the right earnest through pamphlets, memoranda submitted periodically to the state and central Governments and brings pressure on the Government to initiate appropriate measures for amelioration of accumulating problems of the farming community in the district.  The issues raised by them include those of local nature to that of larger questions of farmers’ security against foreign remote control on farm inputs and outputs and such organisations as WTO, World Bank.  Though the movement took birth in Parkal area of erstwhile taluq, it has slowly spread in to all parts of the district and have organisational setup at all thee mandals.  No doubt that this farmers’ organisation is able to solve some of the local problems with their constant persuation and struggle, much more needs to be done in creating awareness and mustering strength of the community at large.



Economics of Different Crops in 1996-’97 and 1997-98



4.1.1.   As mentioned in the earlier chapter, the district agriculture has been under going transformation from a pure subsistence economy to that of new agricultural technology promoting a shift in cropping pattern favouring rice in the beginning and later towards commercial crops like chilly and cotton.  Such shifts involve changes in cultivation practices and input use.  One of the basic features of crops under new technology is cost-investments.  Small farms being what they are, may find it difficult to mobilise required resources in the adoption of such a technology. Encouragement for such shifts may also flow from the returns, which they get in the new crops.  Therefore, it is a matter of interest to analyse the costs and returns in respect of small farms.  Date collected from 50 sample farmers drawn from 10 mandals are analysed and presented in this chapter.  Definitions and concepts are given in Annexure. II.  The details of costs and returns for the crops of cotton, chilly, rice, Maize and groundnut for 1996-97 and 1997-98 are given in the appendix tables 4.1.1 to  4.1.9.


Total Cost of Cultivation:

4.1.2.   A summary of average costs and returns for the years 1996-97 and 1997-98 for cotton, chilly, rice, maize and groundnut is presented in Table 4.1.  Inter Crop comparison of total cost of cultivation show that chilly top with Rs. 24,441 per acre.  This is followed by irrigated cotton and unirrigated cotton respectively.  Among the three other crops, rice accounts for greater cost compared to maize and groundnut.  Per acre costs for chilly and cotton are far higher than for rice, maize and groundnut and it clearly shows that these commercial crops are more cost intensive.  This difference is attributable more to such factors as use of more fertilizers and human labour.  Within cotton, costs per acre of irrigated cotton are higher by 61 percent than unirrigated cotton.  Among other crops, costs are higher in Rabi as compared to Kharif.  This is more on account of greater use of irrigation, fertilizers and labour.



Table 4.1 Per Acre Costs and Returns for Different Crops in

Warangal District, 1996-97 & 1997-98

In. Rs.

Sl.       Costs/Returns                    Cotton                    Chillies                     Paddy                     Maize               Groundnut

No.             Irrigated           Unirrigated         Irrigated         Kharif     Rabi         Kharif     Rabi         Kharif     Rabi

1.                            2       3                  4         5                  6         7                  8         9                10         11

         :  1996-97  :

1.      Paid Costs         9281      7330         11681    3600         3765      1983         2957        985         3072

2.      Operational costs 14475    9833         18121    5892         6163      2711         5265      3438         4637

Total cost     20795     12879     24441       8235       8506       4067       7171       4794       6563

Gross Returns     14059       9396     14320       7068       7927       3854       5687       2847       4606

Return over paid costs       4778       2066       2639       3468       4162       1871       2730       1862       2534

Returns over operational costs  -416  -437      -3801       1176       1764       1143         422        -591          -31

Net Returns  -6736      -3483    -10121      -1167        -579        -213      -1484      -1947      -1957

R/C ratio :        0.69        0.72        0.58        0.85        0.93        0.94        0.79        0.59        0.70

:  1997-98  :

1.      Paid Costs         10441    8365         13294    3588         3917      1778         2789        805         2003

2.      Operational costs 15917  10880         19489    5968         6360      2594         5077      3127         4420

Total cost     22237 13926  25809 8321      8702 3924      6993 4477      6365

Gross Returns 10950    7695 15848    7560 6942      3600 3754      1350 2420

Return over paid costs        -691 -1870     2554 3972      3025 1822        945 545          417

Returns over operational costs      -4967 -3185   -3641 1592        582 1006     -1323 -1777   -2000

Net Returns -11287 -6231   -9961 -761     -1760 -324     -3239 -3127   -3915

R/C ratio :        0.49 0.55        0.61 0.90        0.80 0.91        0.53 0.30        0.38


4.1.3.   In terms of operational costs, similar trends are discernible.  These operational costs, by and large, account for more than two-thirds of the total costs.  The proportion of paid costs in total cost of cultivation is slightly higher among commercial crops as compared to rice, maize and groundnut.   In absolute terms, paid costs are more than two and half to three times higher than the other crops, as the purchased inputs like fertilizer, pesticides, wage labour are relatively more among commercial crops than in other crops.  Thus, commercial crops place heavier demand for cash requirements.  These figures no doubt indicate the increased demand for credit.


Inter-Year Differences in Costs :

4.1.4.   In view of severe drought and pest out break in 1997-98 we tried to analyse the impact of these factors on costs and returns by comparing with that of 1996-97 which is a normal year.  The inter-year comparison between 1996-97 and 1997-98 reveals that all the three types of costs i.e. total costs, operational costs and paid costs have gone-up in the later year in respect of cotton chilly and rice.  However, surprisingly enough, maize and groundnut witnessed a slight decline.  The rise in the costs in the cases can be attributed to increased use of fertilizers and pesticides in 1997-98, as compared to 1996-97.


Gross Returns :

4.1.5.   Gross returns per acre in 1996-97 are more among commercial crops of cotton and chilly as compared to other crops.  They are almost double to that of what is realised in rice.  Groundnut realised least returns.  During 1997-98 gross returns have declined in respect of cotton, maize and groundnut.  As against this, chilly and paddy increased their gross returns.  Though the relative prices of cotton and groundnut are better this year, the steep decline in yields has badly affected the gross returns.  In the case of maize in rabi, the fall in gross returns is attributable to a steep decline in the price.  Chilly and rice exhibit a contrasting picture where the gross returns have gone-up in 1997-98 over that of 1996-97.  During 1997-98, yield losses are being quite meagre for these two crops, price advantage has pushed up the gross returns.  Thus, gross returns are subjected to periodic fluctuations owing to unstable yields and fluctuating prices.  Net returns defined as net of total costs (gross returns-total costs) are negative for all the crops in both the years.  One broad trend discernible from the table is that the negative returns are far higher in commercial crops as compared to other crops in both the years.  Inter-year differences are also noticed in respect of different crops.  In absolute figures, the negative net returns increased in 1997-98 over that of 1996-97 in respect of cotton-irrigated and unirrigated, maize and groundnut.  Chilly and rice however, show marginal decline in negative returns.  The negative net returns in 1997-98 are as high as Rs. 11,287 in irrigated cotton and Rs. 9,961 in case of chilly and Rs. 6,231 in unirrigated cotton.  This clearly shows the unviable nature of several crops in the district and indicative of deepening crists more particularly in the small farm economy.

4.1.6.   When we compare gross returns in terms of operating costs, all the crops realised negative returns except rice and maize in Kharif of 1997-98 and the physical losses are more in irrigated cotton, chilly, groundnut and rabi maize.  Rabi maize realised greater losses owing to a fall in maize price in rabi.

4.1.7.   The table further indicates that all the crops have realised margins over paid costs in 1996-97.  In 1997-98 all crops except cotton realised margins over paid costs but they have got reduced except rice. Cotton, which realised some positive returns over paid costs in 1996-97 got negative returns even over paid costs in 1997-98.

4.1.8.            Viewed in the context of return-cost ratios (as worked out by dividing gross returns with total cost of cultivation), all the crops have realised less than one indicating low returns over the costs.  The traditional crops of rice and maize have realised more return/cost ratios as compared to commercial crops of cotton and chilly.

4.1.9.   The rising costs on one hand and the falling yields on the other have adversely affected the return-cost ratios during 1997-98.  The rising costs are observed in respect of use of more pesticides.  Yields have fallen due to drought conditions, depletion of ground water and adverse weather conditions, which resulted in an unprecedented pest outbreak.

4.1.10. Such a fall in the return-cost ratios for all the crops except rice has really thrown the farming community in to a serious distress and gross inability to repay the loans.

4.1.11. This being the aggregate picture, we also find inter-farm variations in yields and costs.  In the case of irrigated cotton in 1996-97 the average yield being nine quintals per acre, about 1/3 farms slightly exceed this average.  About 40 percent farms fall in the yield categories of 7 to 9 quintals.  Rests of them are having yields of less than 7 quintals.  However, there are farms with as fewer yields as 2 to 3 quintals per acre.  At the then prevailing prices in 1996-97, an average yield of 12 quintals appears to be the break-even point where farmers are left in no loss-no gain position.

4.1.12. In respect of unirrigated cotton, also we notice inter-farm variations ranging from one quintal per acre to 9 quintals.  However, nearly half of them concentrate in the yield size category of four to eight quintals per acre about ¼ the fall in the category of less than 4 quintals per acre.  At the prevailing prices in 1996-97, 8 quintals appear to be the break-even point.

4.1.13. In case of chilly, the average yields being about 8 quintals, it varied between 2 quintals to 10 quintals.   But, major concentration is in the range of 6 to 10 quintals per acre.  The 12 to 13 quintals yield per acre appears to be the break-even point.   However, it is quite difficult to achieve a yield rate of this magnitude on the average.

4.1.14. In case of rice the yield variations are quite meager.  They varied between 14 quintals per acre to 22 quintals in  Kharif and between 16 to 24 in Rabi.  A yield increase of 2 to 3 quintals per acre may bring on the break-even point.  Alternatively, price increase of Rs. 50 per quintal may also ensure break-even point.

4.1.15. In the case of maize, yield fluctuations are more in Kharif than in rabi.  If price stability is maintained at Rs. 400 to Rs. 450, break even point can be achieved.

4.1.16. Wide yield variations are also noticed in respect of groundnut, more particularly in Kharif of 1996-97.  The yields vary between 0.5 quintals to 5 quintals in Kharif.  Those who could give one or two wettings were able to get more yields.  In rabi, it varied between 1.2 quintals to 6 quintals.  Two quintals of extra yield over the average yield could achieve the break-even point.


Composition of costs of Cultivation for Selected Crops:

4.2.1.   Crops-wise and season-wise particulars of cost of cultivation are provided in Appendix Tables to 4.1.9.  From the point of view of cost control, it is important to analyse the composition gives item-wise breakup of cost of cultivation for cotton under irrigated and unirrigated conditions for two years i.e., 1996-97 and 1997-98.   For irrigated cotton, operating costs account for a major share i.e., 71.5%.   By 1997-98, this ratio is maintained but we can notice a change in the composition of the cost of cultivation.   The share of fertilizers, which was 20.3 percent in 1996-97, has gone up to 22.6 percent in 1997-98.  The increase in physical expenditure on fertilizers and insecticides has been responsible for not only in the increase of total operating costs but also an increase in its share.  Another component of cost is that of human labour which account for 29.7 percent in 1996-97 and 28.7 percent in 1997-98.  Among fixed costs, interest on fixed capital account for a greater share and is followed by rental value of owned land and depreciation.   It is generally observed that rental values are relatively more in cotton growing areas as compared to non-cotton growing areas, and as such it is relatively more for cotton and chilly than for other corps like maize and groundnut.   Even in cotton growing areas, the rental values vary between lowest of Rs. 1,000 to as high as Rs. 6,000 depending upon the soil fertility, irrigation facilities local demand for lease-in land etc.  Due to greater prospect of realising higher returns, farmers showed and increasing tendency to lease-in the land more particularly, among the small farmers.  For example, a deceased farmer of Nagaram Village has leased-in 2 acres by paying Rs. 12,000 as rent. Another farmer of Bhagirthipet leased-in 3 acres of land by paying amount of Rs. 15,000 as annual rent.

4.2.2.   In 1997-98, farmers used more fertilizers and pesticides as compared to last year.  Even in normal conditions, farmers are found to have indiscriminately using chemical fertilizers and pesticides.  Added to this, the adverse conditions of 1997-98 resulted in outbreak of pests that forced the farmers to go for increased use of pesticides resulting in higher expenditure.  A farmer from Katrapally has used pesticides for not less than 25 times involving an expenditure of more than Rs.5,000 per acre on pesticides alone.  Irrigation is another important input where it is proving to be quite costly.  If one has to calculate the cost of irrigation through well, one needs to take into account huge investments made on digging, installing pumpsets and laying of pipelines and bore-wells.  If we add depreciation to it, the total cost of well irrigation will be very high but, for the purpose of this study, we have taken into consideration only the prevailing rates of irrigation, which is quite meagre from any standard.  These trends do indicate that there is ample scope for cost control on these aspects.  In the case of unirrigated cotton, the share of operating costs in the total costs is relatively high when compared to irrigated cotton.  Among different components, the relative shares of fertilizers and pesticides is more in unirrigated cotton than in irrigated cotton.  However, the relative share of human labour is less.   A comparison of 1996-97 and 1997-98 situations show that while the relative share of fertilizers and insecticides has gone up substantially, the relative share of human labour got reduced.



4.2.3.   The total per acre cost of cultivation for chilly is Rs.24,441 in 1996-97 and Rs.25,809 in 1997-98.  Compared to cotton, it is quite higher.  Operating costs occupy relatively greater share than in cotton.  The increase in operating costs during 1997-98 are relatively more than increase in total costs thereby reflecting higher percentage of operating costs in 1997-98 than in 1996-97.   Human labour accounts for largest share of about 29 percent in the total cost of cultivation.  This is followed by fertilizers and insecticides which account for about one-fourth of the total cost.   Between the two reference years, it noticed a greater expenditure on this item.  More or less similar trends are noticed in respect of increased use of fertilizers and insecticides as that of cotton.   However, irrigation costs are relatively more in chilly than in cotton.  Chilly requires more controlled irrigation, more number of wettings than for cotton.

Rice :

4.2.4.   Total cost of cultivation for rice comes to Rs.8,245 in 1996-97 Kharif and it recorded only marginal increase in the year 1997-98.  Human labour accounts for one-fifth of the total cost.  Fertilizers, Pesticides and irrigation follow this.  Similar features continue to exist even during 1997-98.  During 1996-97, rabi costs are slightly more than in Kharif.  Total cost of cultivation for cotton and chilly are almost 2½ times and 3 times more than that of rice.


Maize :

4.2.5.   Total cost of cultivation for maize is Rs.4,067 in Kharif and Rs.7,171 in rabi of 1996-97.  The relative costs for 1997-98 are Rs.3,924 and Rs.6,993 respectively.  These figures indicate that cost of cultivation will go up by 60 to 75 percent in rabi over Kharif.  Increased use of fertilizers and insecticides, human labour, and irrigation contribute substantially to this rise in costs in rabi.  Unusually, costs did not rise in respect of maize during 1997-98.  As for the composition, human labour accounts for one-fifth of total costs and bout one-third in operational costs. Fertilizers and insecticides together and irrigation in rabi account for about 14 percent each.  The share of operational costs in total cost of cultivation is around 72%.  However, this share is relatively less in Kharif than in Rabi.


Groundnut :

4.2.6.   In another traditional crop i.e., groundnut the total cost is the least.   In 1996-97 and 1997-98 the costs of cultivation are more or less at the same level both in Kharif and Rabi.  They stood respectively at Rs. 4,794 and Rs. 4,447 in Kharif and Rs. 6,335 respectively in Rabi.  The share of operational costs is about 70 percent.   The share of human labour is the highest in groundnut as compared to any other crop examined in this study.  Though in monetary terms, it is more or less the same, the relative shares varied between the lowest of 27.3 percent in 1996-97 rabi to the highest of 41.2 percent in rabi 1997-98.  In rabi irrigation costs accounts for the next highest one.

4.2.7.            Further, the Appendix Tables indicate that paid out costs as proportion to operational costs are relatively more among cotton and chilly as compared to traditional crops of maize and groundnut and that of rice occupying the middle position.  Thus, it indicates the growing monetisation of the farm economy in the district, owing to changed cropping pattern towards cotton the chilly and change in cultivation practices.


Inter-temporal Comparison of Costs & Returns

4.3.1.   As already mentioned, chilies and cotton have acquired prominence with the introduction and promotion of these crops by the settlers in Warangal district.  The study of A.Sudarshan Reddy, has clearly brought out the price responsiveness of these crops.  It has also worked out the costs and returns for these crops.   The present report wish to analyse the comparative picture of costs and returns with the purpose of identifying the trends which have been taking place during the last 20 years.  The 1975-76 study was based on the data collected from 50 farmers growing cotton and chilly from two taluks in Warangal district.  The information on inputs and output as analysed in the previous study is given in Table 4.2. At that time cultivation practices for chilly and cotton were more or less the same.  The comparison of the earlier performance with that of the performance in 1996-97 shows that the total costs of production has gone up from Rs. 3,690 to Rs. 20,232 for irrigated cotton, realising 5.6 times of increase.   On the other hand, gross returns increased from Rs. 4,6256 to Rs. 14,559 an increase of 3.1 times.  It is clear from this, that the rate of increase is much higher in the case of costs than in the case of returns.  Consequently, irrigated cotton, which realised output-cost ratio of 1.23 in 1975-76, has come down to 0.69 in 1996-97.  In the case of unirrigated cotton, total cost of cultivation has gone up from Rs. 2,561 in 1975-76 to Rs. 12,879 showing an increase of 5 times.  During the same period, output has gone up from Rs. 3,000 to Rs. 9,396 showing an increase of 3.1 times.  It is interesting too note that the physical average yield obtained then and now is almost the same both in irrigated and unirrigated cotton.  The mater of difference is that the sample farmers in 1975-76 comprise of large progressive farmers cultivating these crops.  On the contrary, the present sample consists of small farmers drawn from many parts of the district.  Though, both the situations are not exactly comparable, they give rough estimate of the changes which are occurring during the last 20 years, particularly on economic aspects.  Physical yield remaining almost the same changes in the money costs ado reflect in the relative changes of inputs and output.  For unirrigated cotton output-cost ratio being 1.16 in 1975-76 has come down to 0,72 in   1996-97.  Thus, it is clear from these trends that the output-cost position has gone against he farm economy.


4.3.2.   Similar trends may also be noticed in case of chilly.  The total cost of cultivation which was Rs. 3,690 in 1975-76 was shot up to Rs.24.441 an increase of 6.8 times, on the contrary, the output has gone up form Rs. 5,250 to Rs. 14,320 an increase of 2.7 times.  The slow growth in the output to some extent can be attributed to a lower yield at 8.5 quintals as against 12 quintals in 1976-77.   But, even if we correct the yield differences, there is wide gap still left between the rate of increase in the cost of cultivation and output.   This gap is mostly attributable to two major factors.  The relative prices of chilly were not rising in proportion to the rise in the costs.  The net effect is effected in a steep fall in the output-cost ratio.  In  1975-76, output-cost ratio being 1.42 has come down to 0.58 in 1996-97, for the reasons of both yield and price instability.  This crop, though, enjoyed some primacy in the past, has been relegated to background.   Hitherto, cotton was considered relatively more stable in terms of yields and prices but in the recent past it is noticed that yield instability was haunting cotton as well.


Table: 4.2

Per Acre Costs & Returns for Cotton  and  Chillics for 2975-76 in  Rs.


Sl.No.                       Item                       Irrigated                       Unirrigated

Operational Costs

1.                     Human Labour 850            680

2.                     Bullock Labour 150            150

3.                     Machine  Power       - -           --

4.                     Manure          -  -    --

5.                     Seeds            75            75

6.                     Fertilizers        600            390

7.                     Pesticides       600            411

8.                     Irrigation charges            300   --

9.                     Interest on working capital

         And fixed  capital.         400         300

                        Total Operational  Costs   2975            2006

Fixed Costs.

10.                   Rental value (owned  land)     600            440

11.                   Land  Revenue            115            115

12.                Depreciation         Cotton         Chill.         Cotton         Chill

                        yield in (Qtls)   9.25            10            6.0            5.5

                        Price Rs.       500            525            500            525

13.                   Interest on Fixed  Capital --      --           --      --

            C.            Total  Cost of Cultivation            3690            3690            2561            2561

            D.            Gross Returns 4625            52550            3000            2887

            E.            Returns over paid costs               --   --           --      --

            F.            Returns over operating costs    1650            2275 994      881

            G.            Net  Returns   935            1560            439            326

            H.            Return-cost Ratio  :   1.23     1.42            1.16            1.13


Note :   Interest costs are shown combinedly for working Capital and  fixed capital.

Based on data collected from 50 farmers from 10 villages for the year 1975-76.

b)  As cultivation practices were common, costs were collected for the two crops together.           


4.3.3.   The inter-temporal comparison to these two crops clearly shows that output increases were not in pace with the cost escalation.  These two crops which were ensuring net gains over the costs has over the period led to heavy losses thereby adversely affecting the farming community in the district.  Now that cotton acquired primary position in terms of area as well as output, the deteriorating situation in the farm economy has no doubt, been contributing to the gathering crisis in the agrarian sector in the district.







5.1.1.   Then comes 1997-98.  It inflicted severe strain on the farm, economy mainly in three ways 1) the severe drought   (2) falling ground water tables and   (3) unprecedented outbreak of pest.


The Drought:


5.1.2.   1997-98 witnessed a severe deficient rainfall.  The rainfall data given in Table 5.1.  Shows clearly that the crucial first quarter between June and August realised less than 50 percent of the normal year.  The rainfall was not only scanty but also delayed in the month of June.  As a result, sowing operations have not only been delayed but also reduced considerably.  The net sown area has come down to about 75 percent of the normal sown area.  Area losses occurred in respect of green gram, sesamum and groundnut.  Major loss is inflicted on rice where area loss is about 1 lakh ha.  This loss occurred both under tanks and wells.  Since rice is a predominant crop and also that it contributes substantially to the agricultural production in the district, this will have greater impact on the farm economy.   Area loss is also noticed in respect of chilly, though it is mostly cultivated under irrigated conditions.



5.1.3.   For green gram, sesamum the prime period of crop growth being July and August, the deficient rainfall and the two long dry spells have not only arrested the growth of these crops but also led to more than 80 percent of yield loss.  As 60 percent of cotton is grown under rainfed conditions this year, the yield loss on account of drought is estimated tot be about 20 percent.  Groundnut due to moisture stress at the time of peg formation.  As soil became hard, pegs could not be penetrated into the soil as a result of which yields have fallen down to 35 percent.  Maize yields in Kharif are also affected by two dry spells, which occurred in the month of July and August as a result of which the yield loss was about 25 percent.


Falling Ground water Table:


5.1.4.            Another disquieting factor contributing to further deterioration in the agrarian situation in the district is fast depletion of ground water.  Under the influence of the drought during this year, as already mentioned in chapter II ground water table has been falling even in the three years preceding 1997-98 in spite of they being the normal years.  Field observation and farmers reporting show that the ground water level has fallen down to the lowest ebb yielding less than 50 percent of previous year’s capacity.  More than 30 percent of the wells have dried up or on the verge of drying up.  In about 50 percent of the cases, the wells are yielding only 40 to 50 percent of normal yield.


5.1.5.   Under this influence, rice area and rice yields suffered heavily booth in Kharif and Rabi.   In case of cotton, farmers could not provide required water at the crucial stages of crop growth resulting in heavy losses in the yields.  The combined effect of deficient rainfall and the consequent fast depletion of ground water have contributed to the growing agony of the farmers.



Table 5.1 Comparative Rainfall Position in the District


Period  Month            Normal Rainfall Actual Rainfall Actual Rainfall

                                                            1996-97                    1997-98                   

I           June                        150.3                        183.6                                    98.2

            July                        295.4                        329.3                                    148.7

            August                        228.4                        330.3                                    125.7

            Sub Total    674.1                        843.2                                    372.6

II            September       192.5                        163.0                                    203.0

            October           76.0                        57.4                                    89.8

            November       22.5                        15.7                                    53.7

            December       9.6                        1.9                                    57.6

            Sub Total    300.6                        238.0                                    404.2

Year                             1048.1                        1185.8                                    771.8


The Later Rains :


5.1.6.   An unprecedented and peculiar behaviour of dispersal of rainfall during this year is that of more rainfall than the normal one in the months of October, November and December.  This could be treated as an erratic behaviour in the rainfall condition.  Not only that the rainfall period is elongated, during this period is elongated, during this period the winter effect is almost zero.  This elongation of rainfall until December has also aversely affected the onset of southern winds, which are very crucial for flowering of citrus, and mango gardens.  It looks as though the seasonal effect is minimised and the weather conditions are modified causing immense damage to all the crops in the district.  It has been observed that during last 2 to 3 years environmental factors began to show their effect.  Much more effect is seen in 1997-98.   Frequent temperature variations have become a new characteristic in the district.   This year, the district has witnessed absence of cold nights in the winter season, as a result of which not only the pest problem arose but, the yields have fallen in respect of cotton and chilly.  The absence of cold season has badly affected the flowering of citrus and mango gardens.  Citrus flowering has got reduced to 50 percent and the survival rate is hardly 20 percent of normal rate.  In case of mango, flowering was hardly 20 percent and fruit bearing was only 5 to 10 percent of normal rate.  It is during this period that the vegetative growth stages of the important crops like cotton, chilly, groundnut and red gram were arrested.


Out Break of Pest:


5.1.7.   The much devastating effect of the weather conditions as reflected in untimely rainfall from October to December and the consequential absence of winter effect is seen in respect of several crops.  Cotton, chilly, red-gram and groundnut crops, which suffered for want of water during early period, have been regenerated.  To corner this benefit farmers applied excessive Nitrogenous Fertilizers and Pesticides more so in the case of cotton and chilly.  The early drought period and the later untimely rains have brought about quick chances in the temperature.  The later rains suddenly brought down the high temperature in the early period.  The combined effect is seen in unprecedented occurrence of spodoptera.  In fact spodoptera is a minor pest in Warangal District but due to this adverse seasonal condition, the pest emerged in large scale and attacked all the standing crops.




5.1.8.   Cotton being the largest grown crop in the district, it has suffered greatly.  Delayed monsoon and inadequate rains have badly affected in sowing, arresting of vegetative growth in the early period.  The later period witnessed a havoc wherein with regeneration, farmers applied excess nitrogen which attracted the pests.  Farmers used pesticides more particularly synthetic pyrethroids, which could not control the pest particularly spodoptera.


5.1.9.   Apart from spodoptera the other important pests which effected cotton crop include.  Heliotheis Armigera, whitefly and Jassids.  The rate of attack of these pests however, varies slightly and the more serious were pink bollworm.   The combined effect of these pests resulted in yield losses of about 4 quintals per acre in the case of irrigated cotton and about 2-3 quintals in case of unirrigated cotton.  The early crop pickings suffered in quality of cotton because of later rains.  The qualities of the later pickings were also badly effected by pink bollworm.  Thus, the yield losses in cotton due to drought as well as the pest attack comes to around 50 percent in case of irrigated crop and about 30-40 percent in the case of unirrigated crop.


5.1.10. In the case of chilly, apart from the general effects of late sowing and arrest of vegetative growth in the early stages, dieback and fruit rot diseases attacked the crop in the subsequent period.  Excessive use of Nitrogen and topdressing with phosphotic fertilizers has not yielded much result.   As a consequence, the yields have fallen down to 20 percent.  As with the cotton, the later rains have badly effected the crop yields in chilly as well.  The more devastating effect is seen where 25-30 percent of the yield has lost its quality by loosing colour due to virus.


5.1.11. Red gram crop has suffered n account of late sowing and arrest of vegetative growth and delay in flowering in the early period.  September and October rains gave boost for immediate flowering but the later rains resulted in an unprecedented attack of heliotheis and crop failure is about 80 percent.


5.1.12.            Groundnut in Rabi has almost washed away under the spell of pests and the yields are around 40 percent of the normal yield.


5.1.13. In the case of Rice, the yields have been quite low as compared t the previous years in Kharif season.  The later rains have cured at a time when the Kharif harvesting was in progress and quality of the rice has been badly effected.  Another peculiar feature noticed in respect of Rice in Rabi is that of early maturity which is mainly attributable to the modification of weather conditions during month of December.  Rice yields reduced by 20 percent in Rabi.  Early plantations under well irrigation suffered with early pollination in Rice.  In Narsampet area hybrid paddy failed because of genetic defect in Rabi of 1997-98.  Yield losses are also noticed in rice n account of pollination defect.  In Ippaguda area severe loss occurred for IR 64 variety due to male sterility.  Female sterility is noticed in respect of MTU.  The temperature variations are mainly responsible for such yield loss in the case of rice.


Intra - District Variation in Effects:


5.1.14. This being the overall effect of drought and pest problem at the district level, it may be noticed that there are interregional variations with in the district.  As already mentioned red soils are more concentrated in the erstwhile Taluks of Jangaon, Mahabubabad parts of Warangal and Narsampet.  The rainfall is quite meagre in Jangaon region where rainfall is less than 750 mm.  As mentioned earlier it is a hardcore Taluk from the point of view of intensity of drought.  On the other hand Mahabubabad parts of Narsampet, Warangal and Parkal fall in the rainfall range of 751 to 1000mm.  Whereas Mulug falls in the 1000mm and above range of rainfall area.  Relatively more black cotton soil patches are noticed in the northeastern part of the district.  Under the influence of these natural factors regional variations are observed in respect of crops grown in these three regions.  Rice is only the crop, which is common in all the areas for it is grown both under tank irrigation and well irrigation.  In the case of other crops we notice source localisation of crops.  In the first area comprising Janagaon castor, Jowar, Sesamum, green gram, red gram and groundnut are grown mostly as rain-fed crops.  In Mahabubabad area we find a cropping pattern confining to Jowar, green gram, Turmeric, red gram, chilly and groundnut.  Contrary to this, we notice altogether a different cropping pattern in parts of Warangal, Mulug, Narsampet and Parkal, which are localised in terms of cotton.  Irrigated cotton is located in pats of Narsampet, Warangal and entire parkal taluka.  Therefore, the crop losses as mentioned in the previous paragraphs have differential impact on different areas of the district.















Farmers’ Suicides:




6.1.1.   This chapter deals with different dimensions of farmer’s suicide deaths in Warangal district.  Section -I is devoted for an indepth study of 50 deceased farmer’s house holds in Warangal district.  While presenting socio-economic characteristics like caste, age, land ownership, assets, cropping pattern etc.  It attempts to analyse the reasons for farmer’s suicides, Section -II deals with the nature of suicide deaths and attitudes of the cross section of society.


Section - I - Field Study


Characteristic Features of Deceased House Holds :

Caste Background:

6.1.2.   The caste wise breakup of 50 deceased farmer households shows that suicides cut across all the caste groups however, backward caste groups mainly hailing from yadava, (Shepherd) chakali (Washerman) Telaga (Fruit vendors) Wadla (Carpenter) Mangali (Barbar) Padmashali (Weaver) etc  constitute more than two-thirds of total suicide deaths under study.  Enquiry reveals that most of these caste occupants have shifted to cultivation owing to declining caste occupational opportunities over time.  The general conditions under which they take up cultivation were far from encouraging.  An important aspect is lack of adequate knowledge of cultivation practices in general and the cotton cultivation in particular.  Moreover, they have reported several resource constraints such as wells, bullocks and institutional credit etc.  For instance, Mahammadapur, Keshavapur, Chintalapalli, suicide cases comes from a chakali (washer-man) family.  Thimmampet, Nagaram cases have shifted from padmashali (Weaver) Weaving to cultivation, Carpenter family from Bagirthipet, Kuruma (Yadav) from peddapuram, Mangali (barbar) from Baironpally, Kummari (Potter) from shambaiah pally etc are found to have shifted to active cultivation from their earlier caste occupations.


6.1.3.   The next victimised section is that of scheduled tribes particularly Lambadas.  They constitute 14 percent. Reddy, Velama and others follow these caste groups.  They account for 12 percent.  Scheduled castes account for 6 percent.




6.1.4.   Age-wise composition of suicide cases reveals that youth is by and large, falling victim to such a phenomenon.  As many as 44 percent cases fall in the age category of 30 to 40 years.  About one-fourth of the cases fall in the age group of less than 30 years and another one-fourth fall in the age group of 40 to 50 years.  Due to lack of adequate employment opportunities outside agriculture and the declining caste occupations have compelled the youth to remain in the villages and seek an alternative.  Inspired by the success stories of chilly and cotton cultivation either in the village or with the relatives, they have shifted to the modern agriculture particularly the cultivation of commercial crops like cotton and chilly.  Majority hold the attitude that traditional crops are not in a position to give adequate returns to get even a minimum livelihood.  Youth have some schooling and are exposed to the latest changes and optimistic to earn better incomes.  Youth being relatively more dynamic and adventuristic when compared to their parents have favoured these commercial crops.  They were also confident that with their mobile nature, they could procure the necessary inputs like seed, fertilizer, pesticides, credit etc.  In parents or they got separated so as to enable them to take independent decisions.

6.1.5.   The study shows that as many as 90 percent of the cases are of nuclear type. There are several instances where the shift from traditional farming to commercial crops has strained the relations among the members and more particularly with parents. A case in Pegada pally, case each in Vangapahad and Thorrur are the instances of separation from parents on matters of clash in farm decisions. In search of better returns, they have committing certain expenditures to build up necessary farm infrastructure by acquiring some land, develop well irrigation and leasing in. The youth, thus, found to exhibit quick response to the changing farm environment in view of their urge to better their economic position in the short period but with out realising the prospective dangers inherent in the cultivation of such sensitive crops. When the ground realities proved otherwise, the youth were unable to reconcile and in frustration they took recourse to suicides.

6.1.6.   Land holdings :

Land distribution pattern shows that deceased farmers are by and large small farmers of less than 5 acres. Farmers holding more than 5 acres constitute 14 percent. 34 percent fall in the land ownership category of 1 to 2 acres. An equal percentage of farm households fall in the land holding size class of 2 to 4 acres. Fourteen percent from households own land of less than one acre. Interestingly, there are four- percent farm households who do not any land but cultivate on leased in lands.

6.1.7.   As explained in the district background smallholdings of less than 5 acres are rising rapidly since the last two decades. This more owing to sub-division on one hand and a switch over from traditional caste occupations to farming by acquiring land. Weavers, tappers, shepherds, washer-men and such other caste entered into farming as newly acquired occupations.

6.1.8.            Another interesting feature is that of leasing in the land for cultivation. On the whole 40 percent of cases leased in land. As already mentioned here 4 percent cases have taken up cultivation solely on the leased land. In the first land holding category less than one acre leasing in is reported to be 70 percent. In the second category of one to two acres, it is 40 percent. In the third category of two to four acres it is 30 percent. In the case of last category of above four acres, leasing in is absent. Leasing in, thus, appears to be a phenomenon more among very smallholdings and is growing over time on account of cultivation of commercial crops like cotton and chilly.

6.1.9.   The phenomenon of leasing in is noticed both under irrigated and unirrigated areas. Rent per acre varies from Rs. 1000/- as minimum to a maximum of Rs. 6000/- per acre per annum, depending on the fertility and irrigation. A deceased farmer from Nagaram village in Bhoopalapally mandal leasedin two acres of land from his brother at the rate of Rs. 6000/- per acre per annum. Leasing in contracts are made generally for one year. Farmers who lease out comprise very small landholders, employees, widows and aged people. Further, it is also noticed that very small landholders are leasing out their small patches owing to lack of non- land assets like bullocks, wells, pumpsets etc.

6.1.10. In order to make the farm unit viable, certain farmers have purchased small plots adjacent to their land. Sometimes, deceased farmers did not mind to buy lands even by taking loans. They held a strong faith in commercial crops that they can repay in short span of time. Katrepally Chinthalapally deceased farmers did exactly the same and entangled in debt burden of serious nature.


Cropping pattern :

6.1.11. The cropping pattern followed by deceased farmers indicates that 90 percent of deceased farmers have grown cotton. Only ten percent deceased farmers raised other crops exclusively. On the whole, 32 percent farmers have grown cotton exclusively. In about 16 percent cases, cotton is cultivated along with chilly. In another one/ third cases, cotton crop is raised along-with other crops like rice, jowar, maize, green-gram etc. In about 10 percent cases other crops are grown along with cotton and chilly. It is thus, cotton is emerged as a principal crop among the deceased farm households. The tendency appears to be more towards commercial crops like cotton and chilly and monoculture of cotton. This cash crop syndrome is not only confined to large farms but engulfed even very smallholdings. For some of the cases, cotton and chilly are newly entered crops in the past four or five years in their crop husbandry.

6.1.12. As explained earlier, cotton cultivation in the district though commenced on a small-scale way back in 1970s, the spread of this crop took momentum since mid-eighties. As for the period of experience with this crop, majority of deceased households reported that they had 7 to 8 years of experience. About 1/5th had experience exceeding 10 years. The remaining 1/4th had experience of 4 to 5 years.

6.1.13. Better yields and greater returns in the village in the early period of its adoption prompted the small farms to take up cotton and chilly cultivation. To a great extent these farmers are late adopters of these crops owing to poor resource base in terms of irrigation and credit. For these adopters, these two crops gave reasonably good yields in the early period. With their early experience they hold a strong faith in the new crop technology that they would get good yields in the future also by using chemical fertilizers and pesticides. But during last two to three years, yields began to drop suddenly inspite of using hybrid variety seeds and increased use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides. As much as 50 percent farmers reported for the falling yields during last 2 to 3 years. This year proved to be too dreadful as they got quite meagre yields of 2.2 quintals per acre for cotton. From their reporting it is clear that they could not imagine the amount of risks and uncertainties attendant with cotton and chilly.


Source of Irrigation:


6.1.14. Wells energised with pumpsets and tanks from the major sources of irrigation among the deceased farm households. But, this year wells were the only source of irrigation as there was no water received in to tanks.  Seventy two percent deceased families had irrigation sources while the remaining 28 percent do not have any source of irrigation and depend solely on rainfall.  This year half of the wells were completely dried up.  In about one-fourth, the water is in adequate to provide required/normal irrigation.  It is only in the case of 25 percent wells that water is available adequately.

6.1.15. The hoped prospect of good harvest has prompted farmers to go in for digging new wells in a few cases.  However, in majority of cases, whenever instances of well-failures occurred, farmers were required to deepen the wells or going for in-will bores which too could not yield sufficient water output.  In case of new wells, amount of Rs. 50,000 to Rs. 1,00,000 of investment was required.  In case of deepening wells, the amount required ranged between Rs. 10,000 to Rs. 15,000 per well.  For meeting these requirements, farm households depended on private sources.  Farmer families responded that this year wells failed unimaginably though this year is preceded by three normal rainfall years.  In the past, farmers used to find water depth ranges going down only after March, but during the last few years they have been witnessing water shortages from the January onwards.  Unexpectedly, this year it was advanced even before that period.  It is generally observed in those cases that the number of wells in their experience is already exceeds and therefore, they turned pessimistic about success of well irrigation.  Wherever they are optimistic, the already existing debt burden did not permit them to go in for further improvement of wells.  Thus, the failure of well irrigation has become a major constraint this year.  It is reported that wells/in-well bores have failed even when they have made huge investments.  Gorlaveedu, Katrepalli, Elkurthy, Gorrekunta, Kamaram, Pedapur deceased farmers invested huge amounts for well improvement but, failed miserably, with the result they7 are thrown in to a serious debt trap.


6.2.0.            Reasons for Farmer’s Suicides :


6.2.1    An inquiry reveals that crop failure and debt burden appear to be primary reasons for suicide deaths.  There are “other factors’ which contributed for suicide deaths.  “Other factors” include social functions, ill health, children’s education, loss in petty business and family affairs etc.  On the basis of the responses of the deceased households, for purpose of analysis the reasons are grouped into three categories. 1) crop failure 2) debt burden and crop failure 3) debt burden, crop failure and others. About one- fourth of suicide deaths are due to crop failures. This year’s miserable failure of not only cotton crop but also other crops have thrown these farmers into a crisis. Most of the loans are made for meting the farm expenditure in one or two years.  About 42 percent cases refer debt burden and crop failures together to be the main reasons.  For them, part of the debt has been existing over the years and hereditary debt also forms a minute part of it.  The partial failures of the crops on account of irrigation and pest in the last two or three years have resulted in erosion of their ability to pay the current loans and ultimate accumulation of debt.  In the third category, one-third of the farmers reported that apart from these two reasons, the other factors also added to the debt burden.  Among other factors, marriages and social functions occupy predominant position.  Nachinapally, Gorlaveedu, Elukurthi haveli, cases are certain examples where performance of daughter’s/sister’s marriages contributed substantially to the total debt.


6.2.2            However, it is difficult to draw a clear distinction between one reason and the other for the reason that each will have an inter-connected relationship.  For instance, the reasons for crop failures are plenty.  Failure of irrigation, periodic occurrence of drought, changes in weather condition, mono culture, pest problems, deteriorating soil structure, lack of adequate knowledge of cultivation practices etc., are all behind the crop failures.  Series of crop failures will no doubt add to the debt burden.  The practice of social customs and practices are contributing to the debt burden.  Ultimately, all these factors are reflecting in the high debt burden, some times more than their assets pushing them into social and economic crisis and frustration.


Debt Burden :

6.2.3    The study shows all the 50 deceased families are under debt.  The average debt amount per family works out to be Rs.52,000/-.  The debt limits vary between the lowest of Rs.5,000 to a maximum or Rs.2,50.000/-.  However, bulk of the farmers concentrate in debt size groups of Rs.25,000/- to Rs.50,000/- and Rs.50,000/- to Rs.1,00,000/-.  About 18 percent cases, the debt level is above Rs.1,00,000/-.  As majority of the deceased persons fall in the small size category, the debt burden is quite serious.  In the literature it is clearly brought out that debt burden is inversely related to farm size.


Old and Current Debts :


6.2.4    The total debt is further categorised into old debts and current debts.  Old debts refer to the debt existing till the end of 1996-97.  Whereas the current debt refer tot he borrowings made in 1997-98.  Old debts comprise about 58 percent.  The remaining comes under current debt.  Among the old debts investments made on irrigation development, purchase of small plots of land, bullocks and other farm equipment constitute the major component.  Apart from these hereditary debts, crop losses over the years and marriages and other social expenditure have also formed into the old debts.  On the other hand in the current debts loans made for the purpose of meeting short-term credit needs in the form of fertilizers, pesticides have formed important component.  The other significant factor is the loan taken for well development by way of deepening well, laying in well bores, replacement of old pumpsets with new etc.


Purpose of borrowing :

6.2.5.   The analysis of purpose wise borrowing reveals that most of the loans are made to meet the medium to long term capital needs at the farm level.  Development of farm level infrastructure like sinking wells, depending wells, laying in well bores, purchase of bullocks and other farm equipment received lions share of old debts.  50 percent cases have reported to obtain loans for improvement of wells.  In about 20 percent cases, they have obtained loans for digging wells in last 3 to 4 years.  This apart about 16 percent of deceased farmers took loans for purchasing lands.  Yet another common feature noticed is that of making borrowings for meeting short term credit needs like purchase of seeds, fertilizer, pesticides etc. without single exception every one says that these needs have grown after introducing commercial crops and these needs are on day to day basis.  Every one is borrowing short-term credit from different sources and more particularly commission agents and pesticide dealers.  Other purposes of borrowing include the expenditure incurred on account of marriages, social functions, ill health, education etc.  About one-fourth cases have obtained loans to meet such expenses.  Thus, the analysis shows that loans are taken mostly for productive purposes.


Accumulation of Debt :

6.2.6.   It has been generally reported that debt was accumulating over the years for various reasons.  Initial investments have no doubt conferred benefits in increased yields and stability in the yields.  The new technology has reinforced their faith in crop successes.  It is this confidence, which made them to commit their surpluses towards purchase of small plots, improvement/construction of houses, liberal expenditure on social functions. But, soon depletion of ground water has come not only as a major constraint for improved yields but also made them to invest further for deepening of wells and laying of in well bores periodically.  There are even failures in wells in supply of adequate water.  50 percent of the deceased families reported to have suffered with crop losses due to depletion of ground water and insufficient irrigation.  Even in the normal years, there have been crop failures owing to pest problem.  42 percent of the deceased farm families reported that they have suffered with yield losses owing to pest problem in the previous years also.  28 percent of cases reported that crops have failed on account of lack of required capital to meet the growing input costs.  44 percent of the deceased farmer households have said that soils are degrading owing to constant cultivation of the same crop over the years and because of excess use of pesticides and fertilizers.  The practice of monoculture particularly in respect of cotton has led to constant decline in yields.  Defective seeds, spurious pesticides are found to have effected crop yields in about 22 percent cases.  Yet another important observation made in the study relates to the cultivation practices.  Due to lack of knowledge, farmers were using pesticides and fertilizers indiscriminately.  At times their use is more than 2 to 3 times higher than that of stipulated doses of fertilizers and pesticides.  For instance, a farmer hailing from Katrapally used pesticides worth of Rs.5000 per acre and sprayed not less than 25 times but the crop yield was hardly 4 quintals per acre.  Thus, the indiscriminate use over time has adversely affected the yield on one side and resulted in unnecessary cost escalation on the other.  The periodic occurrence of droughts has also been responsible for instability in the yields more particularly in cotton and other rainfed crops.

6.2.7.   1997-98 has altogether a different story, in view of severe drought in the beginning and untimely excess rainfall in the later period, depleting ground water and outbreak of pest.  Almost all the farm households have reported that this year is unprecedented in their farming experience.  It is the year, which badly affected the yields of all the crops they grew.  The average cotton yield was 2.2 quintals per acre and the yields varied between 1 to 4 quintals among different households.  Rice yield was 7 quintals in kharif, maize 9 quintals, and chilly 4 quintals per acre.  Such low yields have no doubt reflected in a steep fall in the returns.  On the other side farm product prices that influence the return position of the farmer were not rising at the required levels.  Almost all the farm households expressed their considered view that prices of their products are not increasing enough to cover the increasing costs, more particularly in the case of cotton and chilly.  Moreover, the prices are subjected to periodic fluctuations that built up uncertain character of returns.  On the other hand input costs have been rising particularly in the case of fertilizers, pesticides and seasonal enhancements in the wages of farm workers.  Cotton and chilly are more pest-prone and labour intensive and escalation of the above costs has adversely affected the net returns to the farmers.  When we compare these yields with that of the average yields obtained in the study of economics of crops (as reported in the Chapter-IV of this report) these are quite lower and reflect in huge crop losses and thereby the accumulated debts.

6.2.8.   As could be seen from Table 4.1 in 1996-97, which is a normal year, no single crop gave them net returns, defined as gross returns minus total cost of cultivation.  Only rice was giving some returns over operational costs.  Farmers could obtain returns over paid costs and are relatively more in case of rice followed by irrigated cotton.  The return-cost ratios vary from the lowest of 0.58 in case of chilly to the highest of 0.94 in the case of unirrigated maize.  Indeed a worse situation.

6.2.9.   In 1997-98 the position has deteriorated further in terms of return-cost ratios where for most of the crops it got reduced.  Returns over the paid costs have got reduced for almost all the crops except rice.  However, in the case of cotton, returns over paid costs have been placed on the negative side.  When we speak in terms of net returns, the negative returns increased from Rs. 6,173 in 1996-97 to Rs. 11,287 in 1997-98 in case of irrigated cotton and Rs.3,483 to Rs.6231/- in unirrigated cotton.  In case of chilly, it remained almost the same.

6.2.10. Even comparing to the distant past, cotton and chilly which were enjoying favourable return-cost ratios have noticed steep decline and thrown the farming community into a serious crisis overtime.  Failure to repay the loans on account of negative returns has no doubt contributed substantially to the accumulation of debt.  Another important factor, which has contributed to the growing debt, is the interest burden.  As could be seen in the following pages the greater dependence on private sources and high rates of interest charged by informal credit agencies and the interlinked marketing arrangements netted the farming community into serious debt trap.


Sources of Credit :

6.2.11. The long term farm investments and the increased crop expenses for the cotton and chilly were met from both institutional and non-institutional credit agencies.  Among the deceased families, only 40 percent had access to institutional sources of credit and the credit supplied by these agencies account for about 10 percent of the total credit.  However, this 10 percent of the institutional credit is only a part of the accumulated debt of deceased farmers.  Further, they could not renew this owing to their incapacity to repay it and remained as over dues.  With the result, the credit obtained from these sources is quite less during this year.  As noticed from the field study, there has been an increasing tendency of leasing-in land, which remained outside the purview of formal sources of credit.  Thus, adequate credit on better terms has been one of the important problems faced by the deceased.

6.2.12. The study reveals that all the deceased farmers had access to the informal sources of credit like commission agents, dealers and sub-dealers of pesticides, local private sources, relatives and friends.  The amount obtained from these sources account for 90 percent of total credit.  Investments on asset formation such as development of wells, purchase of bullocks and other farm equipment have been high and unable to meet from own sources or formal credit sources, the farmers were forced to rely on private sources.  Added to this, the greater cash requirement and periodic needs of cash for cotton and chilly has raised the dependence on commission agents and pesticide dealers.  This growing dependence enhanced the importance of commission agents and pesticide dealers in the informal sector.  To cite examples, the Nagaram case has a total debt of Rs.89000 of which the institutional loan is only Rs.6000.  Rest of it has been obtained from different other sources like the following.  Two commission agents each Rs.10000/-, pesticide dealer rs.25000/-, local so9urces Rs.20000 and three relatives Rs.18000.  Dharma Rao pet case has a total debt of Rs.29000, of which co-operative loan is of the order of Rs.2500, commission agent Rs.2000, local money lender Rs.5000 and other Rs.12000.

6.2.13. Due to the weakening of traditional money lending system in villages, farmers needed alternative sources and commission agents (Adtidar) provided a viable alternative.  These commission agents were the middlemen through whom farmers dispose of their yield in the market.  The commission agents receive a fixed amount of commission on the sales of farm produce i.e., their business is dependent upon the amount of farm surplus that farmers bring to them.  So in order to assure their business they started advancing to the client farmers.  They rarely ask for surity but ask for an introducer from the same village who already had a link with the commission agent.  The preference for commission agents is also on account of flexibility with which it is operated.  They also lend for other purposes sometimes.  Commission agents normally do not bother about the uses of their loans but they are concerned more with the ability to clear off the debt.  However, the interest rate is 24 percent, which is far higher than the rate charged by the institutional agencies.  The output linkage system makes the farmer weak in the sense that the payments are deferred or in case of immediate cash payment, charge 3 percent extra over and above the 2 percent commission and other charges committed on sales.  This agency has grown in its prominence with the increase in the area under commercial crops and more particularly the cotton.  As the cotton has become more popular during 1990s, this agency too has become stronger and stronger.

6.2.14.            Another important source of credit has been the pesticide dealers who have emerged on the scene in increased numbers with the popularisation of commercial crops.  As the use of pesticides is continuous operation atleast once in a week farmers needed cash on hand all the time but unable to hold it, they tied with the pesticide dealer for continued supply of pesticides till the end of crop.  Normally, the major dealers at Warangal headquarters built up a network of sub-dealers in the Mandal headquarters or a major villages.  The dealers and sub-dealers normally take some advance from the farmers in the very beginning and supply pesticides to the full requirements of farmer.  He starts collecting the dues from the second and third picking of cotton.  As a practice, the dealers and sub-dealers maintain the accounts.  It is generally observed that they charge 15 to 20 percent higher price on pesticides as compared to prevailing normal price and the farmers silently bear this as they are left with no other option.  Another feature of the pesticide dealers is that of dealing with the seeds as well.  To make sure the availability of seed for the next crop, farmers deposit the seed cost with the pesticide dealer who in turn supplies the seeds when the season comes.  Experience in the district shows that such type of arrangements is causing heavy damage where there are instances of supply of adulterated seeds and pesticides.  It is also a common practice that the pesticide dealers are the real decision-makers as to the kind of pesticides, to be used and the dosage.  Since these dealers are guided more by profit, they recommended and supplied heavy and costly pesticides without reference to scientific requirements.

6.2.15. Thus, the informal credit markets particularly commission agents and pesticide dealers have expanded their sphere of activity in the recent past.  These markets are not only confining to simple arrangement of cash but they are linked with farm-input supplies and output disposal.  Such imperfect credit markets turned out to be more exploitative in character through higher prices of pesticides, deficiencies in seeds, supply of low quality and spurious pesticides and unwanted high dosage, high valued pesticides.  On the other, output sales tied with commission agents are resulting in higher interest, low grading, deferred payments and such other market transactions.  Thus, the emergence of cotton and chilly has led to a new element of credit relations which is found to be inimical to the interests of the farming community.


Section - II

Imminent Causes and Consequences :

6.3.1.   As has been discussed in the earlier chapters, the growing tiny holdings, fast depletion of groundwater, adoption of a crop technology that proved costly, unsustainable and risky, the institutional credit agencies not being able to meet the growing demand for credit particularly among vulnerable sections, the failure of market mechanism to properly deliver inputs and ensure remunerative farm prices, the deteriorating return-cost position have all contributed for falling farm incomes, accumulating debts and growing frustration among the farming community.  Thus, the district is witnessing a gathering agrarian crisis over the years.  The crisis exploded when catastrophic conditions prevailed in 1997-98, where almost all the crops are badly effected.  The result is unprecedented farmer’s suicide deaths.

6.3.2.   While agrarian crisis is all pervasive among the small farm community, there are certain imminent reasons which completed some of the farmers to take recourse to such an extreme step.  Their debt position has reached to a brink where any minor sensitive action might lead to end their life. As already mentioned, youth have succumbed to such extreme events due to lack of life experience, the required courage to meet ups and downs in the life and lack of preparedness to face the ordeals.  They had strong faith in the technology and confident of meeting timely input requirements owing to their dynamism, have raised the high hopes but when the real world situation went against their expectations it led them into a state of frustration.  Two cases in Pegadapalli village, one case in Vangapahad another in Boironpally are some of the examples where youth have taken initiative in the adoption of new technology but soon succumbed to death.  By and large, these farm households are poverty stricken and are unable to meet the subsistence requirements.  It is observed that certain families do not have the food grains for few days even.  Their housing condition is quite pathetic.  When the pesticide dealers and commission agents pressed for repayment, unable to bear the agony and having no other alternatives left they were pushed into crisis.  In Katrapally case, when the debt mounted to peak, he took a decision to dispose off the land. Unable to find a buyer last year, he entered into a contract as attached labourer and the entire amount of wage, which is received in advance, is being used to repay the interest.  When pressure mounted this year, he consumed pesticide and died.

6.3.3.   The financial crisis, that emerged out of crop failures, well failures etc., have also contributed as a source of strained family relation. The decision-maker took initiative in adopting new technology, but when failed, the other members in the family, began to question the rationality of his crop commitments and consequential debt commitments.  In Torrur case it is the lady which took initiative in raising cotton, have brought loans through her parents in other village when the crops failed the mother-in-law picked up issue with daughter-in-law leading to the death of daughter-in-law.  Venkatapur of Parkal Mandal, Keshavapur of Venkatapur Mandal are some of the cases where growing debt and consequential family disputes have led them to death.  In Keshavapur case, when the Tak Pattis (Adti receipts) were taken over by lending agencies the farmer committed suicide.  In most of the cases, debts have exceeded assets and where ever they wanted dispose of the properties they could not find a market and lost the opportunity to repay the debts even as a last resort.

6.3.4.   In the aftermath of suicide deaths, the socio-economic conditions among the households have further deteriorated.  The social custom of performing funeral rites has itself raised the burden in the deceased families.  In some cases where exgratia of Rs.1 lakh is arranged and paid in cash only to the tune of Rs.25000, half of the amount has gone for performing funeral rites.  Deceased families are pressed more for the repayment of loans at the earliest.  In case of recently married cases, the settlement of dowry and marriage expenses has become additional burden to the parents of the family.  Pegadapally, Govindapur cases are standing examples for such a consequence.  Another important consequence is that of sharing the exgratia among the family members has become a source of conflict.  The next important problem is with regard to the responsibility of maintaining small children and the place where the wife of the deceased to be put up.  Where the deceased farmers are the only breadwinners, the loss of which has a far-reaching consequence on the maintenance of the aged dependents.  Thus, the suicide deaths no doubt have disturbed family/social environment, which is beyond comprehension.


Suicide Deaths in Warangal District :

6.3.5.   Two years ago in 1996, cotton/chilly farmer’s death has occurred in Venkatapur village of Venkatapur Mandal.  Sporadically farmers’ suicide deaths have started in the month of August 1997 with one case.  In October and November 3 deaths in each month were reported.  The series of deaths commenced in the month of December where there have been 14 suicides in tat month.  In 1998, 34 cases are recorded in January 29 in February, and 20 in the month of March.  By the end of March, there were 104 suicide cases.  46 out of 50 cases have committed suicide by consuming pesticides in other 4 cases 3 have hanged themselves while the remaining one drowned in the well.







Chart 6.3.1

Mandal-wise Distribution of Suicides in Warangal District

No. Of Suicides                 No. Of Mandals

At Mandal Level

              1    18

              2      4

              3      8

              4      1

              5      -

              6      3

              7      1

              8      2

              9      1

total              38


6.3.6.   The spatial distribution of farmer’s suicides indicates that they are spread to 38 mandals out of 52 mandals in the district.  However, the intensity of deaths varied across different Mandals. As could be seen from chart 6.3.1., in 18 mandals, there is one suicide each. There are four Mandals with 2 deaths each. There are seven Mandals where the intensity of suicide deaths is more than 6. It is a coincidence that the Venkatapur Mandal, which has recorded first suicide death two years back, has the highest number of suicide deaths of nine. As could be seen from the map, we find concentration of suicide deaths in a few contiguos Mandals like Sangem, Duggondi, Geesugonda, Atmakur, Shayampet, Hasanparthy. As many as 41 cases (40 percent) are concentrating in these six mandals.  Korivi and Venkatapur appears to be slightly aberrant.  The next concentration may be noticed in Parkal, Regonda, Mogullapally, Chityal, Bhopalpally and Mulug.  These two grouped areas locate in the northeastern corner of the district covering Parka and Mulug areas.  It is these areas where cotton and chilly are also grown abundantly.  As much as 60 to 70 percent of cropped area is covered under cotton.  On the contrary, the intensity of suicides is found to be less in those areas which grown less of cotton and depend on the diversified cropping pattern, these areas include erstwhile Jangaon, Mahabubabad and parts of Warangal and Narsampet Taluks.  Another feature noticed in the case of suicides is the womenfolk also falling victims to such extreme action.  As many as 9 cases of women suicides have occurred in a total of 104 deaths by end of March 1998.  Most of these women are active members of the households and have taken up the lead responsibility in farm management.



Summary of Findings and Conclusion:

7.1.1.   A common feature that emerged on the agrarian scene both the state and district level over time is the proliferating small farms.  Since formation of Andhra Pradesh to date, the number and percentage of small farms of below 5 acres has gone up by about 80 percent.  Holdings of less than 2.5 acres constitute more than 50 percent and are growing at a rapid rate.  Their share of land has also increased considerably.  The factors contributing to such a trend include growth of population, subdivision and fragmentation, lack of opportunities outside agriculture, decline in caste occupations, break down of joint family system, though in a small measure land reforms etc.  From the point of view of form resources, it will enhance labour supply giving scope for increased agricultural production through intensive cultivation, provided the other resources are ensured on the farm.

7.1.2.            However, there are few disquieting features seen in stagnating agricultural work force on one hand and declining share of cultivators as compared to agricultural workers on the other.  The plausible reasons for this trend appears to be declining share of agriculture in the state domestic product without a corresponding reduction in the agricultural population.  The other reason must be the inability of very small farms to generate adequate income and employment to keep him as cultivator.

7.1.3.   The present study of 50 suicide farmers’ households reveals that, in an attempt to make the very smallholding operationally viable one, 16 percentage of farms have purchased small pieces of land in the neighbourhood and 40 percentage leased in the land to ensure the effective use of farm assets like well, pumpset, bullocks etc.

7.1.4.   It is clearly evident that these small farms faced the limitations of capital resources and credit in the process of adopting new agricultural technology.  The initial transformation took place in respect of rice.  The area being semi-arid one, and the tanks were unable to provide dependable source of irrigation, it placed demand for well irrigation.  Well digging and energisation is a costly affair requiring greater investment, it is at this juncture the state intervention was conceived.  But, the data shows that less than 25 percent were able to get only partial support from the state agencies and the rest has come from private sources.  Evidence shows that it is for these reasons that the small farmers are late adopters in HYV rice technology in the beginning and commercial crops like cotton and chilly in the later period.  In addition to this, the new crops requiring greater purchased inputs, like seeds, fertilizer, pesticides, machinery the need for credit exploded.  For instance, the paid out costs worked out for cotton and chilly are more than double to that of rice, maize and other crops.  This has confounded the roblem of meeting short-term credit needs.  Lack of savings, made them to depend on outside sources.  The credit supplied by institutional agencies like commercial banks, cooperatives etc being only 10 percent, the rest came from informal sources like commission agents, pesticide dealers, local sources, relatives and friends.  The rate of interest being more in the case of informal sources has not only increased the burden but also placed the limitation on amount of capital availability.

7.1.5.            Regional variations in different sources of irrigation have brought about changes in the pace and extent of adoption of HYV technology.  Canals being the major source of irrigation in the coastal Andhra region, the rate of adoption of HYV technology in rice was faster in this region compared to the two other regions.  In the later period, while Andhra region maintained stable cropping pattern, the other two regions witnessed a rapid shift in the cropping pattern.  Several traditional crops evolved over a long period have been destabilised.  While Telangana exhibited a tendency of shift towards cotton and chilly, the Rayalaseema region has witnessed a significant shift to groundnut.

7.1.6.   The emergence of well irrigation as a main source of irrigation in Telangana and Rayalaseema areas has raised the investments on irrigation and cost of irrigation.  Further, the declining importance of tanks in these regions has also deepened the iniquitous position between the users of canal, tanks and wells.  Obviously, the costs of well irrigation are far higher than the other sources.  On the contrary, the returns are quite lower.

7.1.7.   Gross neglect of tank irrigation and lack of adequate flow of public support for well irrigation has over burdened the farming community in these regions.  The periodic fall in the ground water tables in these regions has necessitated recurring investments for deepening the wells and raised the investment burden and reduced water supply out take and increased cost of lifting it.  The field study of deceased households reveals that 20 percent have obtained loans for digging wells in the last two to three years and another 50 percent have obtained loans for improvement of wells.  Thus, it formed an important factor in the growth of debt burden of the farming community.

7.1.8.            Telangana region was late and slow in the adoption of HYV rice technology.  After experiencing for about a decade with rice, took another shift towards cultivation of cotton and chilly.  This is prompted by several factors such as limitation of well irrigation for rice cultivation, uneconomical nature of Maize, Jowar and prospect of greater returns and more importantly the demonstration effect of the Andhra settlers.  Though varied in the magnitude, the spread has been extensive in almost all the districts in the Telangana region.  Inspite of the fact that Adilabad has a tradition of growing it extensively over a long period, its impact is not being felt in the other district.  Whereas, the Andhra settlers who have migrated from Guntur and Krishna districts and settled on the black tracts in the entire region played a key role in the popularisation of these crops among the native farmers.  The promoting role by the centre particularly in regard to the release of Hybrid varieties in 1969-70 and the establishment of Integrated cotton Development programme and announcement of support price, all have paved the way for the early spread of HYV cotton technology in Guntur and Prakasham.  The initial success in the form of better yields and good returns lured the native farmers to adopt it.  In the initial phase, settler farmers have played a key role in the encouragement and supply of inputs like seeds, pesticides etc.  In the process, Warangal has emerged as the largely cotton grown district with about one-third of the total area cultivated under cotton in 1997-98.

7.1.9.            Warangal experience clearly shows that cotton is cultivated quite contrary to the scientific requirements such as suitability of the soil, type of the seed, its duration availability of assured irrigation etc.  More than 50 percent or area is covered under red soils, pest prone and long duration varieties like RCH2 are cultivated on entire area even without assured irrigation.  The other requirements as scientific application of fertilizers and pesticides, crop rotation, inter cropping, better knowledge of cultivation practices have not been adhered to in cotton cultivation.  Indiscriminate use of fertilizers and pesticides in excess of recommended doses.  Practice of monoculture, have led to unnecessary cost escalation on one hand and increased pest menace and loss of soil productivity on the other.  Whenever a new and alien crop is introduced, it is a must that farmers are to be informed well in advance the ins and outs of its adoption by the extension agency.  However, the experience in Warangal is contrary to this.  No farmer is in touch with the network of extension agency in the district.  In view of risky nature of this crop, non-adherence to required practices led to disastrous consequences more particularly in periodical crop losses and increased costs.

7.1.10.            Dependence on private agencies for seeds particularly, in respect of cotton and chilly has resulted in adulterated and low quality hybrid seeds.  There are several instances where consumers approached consumer redressal forum for redressal in such instances.  However, due to lack of awareness, there are innumerable farmers who could not seek redressal in the consumer forum but silently suffered the losses by simply attributing it to their fate.

7.1.11. In case of pesticides, long duration and very frequent pest control measures have necessitated periodic requirement of cash.  Unable to meet such requirements from own source, farmers have begun to rely more on pesticide dealers and sub dealers.  Such a growing reliance no doubt resulted in a phenomenal increase in the number of pesticide dealers and sub-dealers.  In view of the higher magnitude of transactions involved, pesticide dealers having a big practice began to supply pesticides on credit basis.  In actual practice, the pesticide dealers began to play the dual role of not simply supplying pesticides on credit basis but also perform the role of extension agency in matters of choice and dosage of pesticides to be used by the farmers.  It is clearly established that these pesticide dealers supplied spurious and low quality pesticides at higher prices and recommended high valued, high potency doses of pesticides even where they are not required at all.  Moreover, they charged higher rates of interest as compared to the rates charged by institutions.  Every farmer is tied up with the pesticide dealer and huge amounts are piled up as dues with the pesticide dealers.

7.1.12. For other cash requirements, farmers tended to depend on commission agents also.  The flexibility with which it is operated has encouraged the farmers to approach these agents.  Because of high valued nature of cotton and chilly crops, the commission agents extended huge sums of money to the farmers so as to ensure their business interests.  However, they charge 24 percent rate of interest.  The farmers are expected to dispose of their produce only through the commission agent.  The output-linkage system made the farmer weak in the sense that the payments were delayed inordinately or in case of immediate cash payment, they charged 36 percent per annum over and above the 2 percent commission and other charges committed as sales.  This agency has grown in its prominence as with the increased crop area under cotton and chilly.  As the cotton has become more popular during 1990s, this agency too has become stronger and stronger.  Ironically, the present day credit arrangements in the informal sector have acquired a new character where most of the credits linked to input supplies or output disposal.  Such tie-ups of credit with input and output markets turned out to be exploitative in character and have resulted in increased debt burden among the small farm community.

7.1.13. Placed in Semi-Arid zone, the district agriculture is subjected to a growing phenomenon of droughts.  Within the present decade, half of them are drought years.  Inspite of the fact that 47 percent of area is covered under irrigation, the district still depend on rainfed agriculture to the extent of 53 percent of the area.  The general decline in the number of rainfall days and increasing dry spells has adverse effect on the crop yields.  The specific instance of 1997-98 showed that the delayed and deficient rainfall caused 25 percent loss in the net sown area and the area loss under rice proved to be quite high.  Since rice contributes substantially to the district agricultural production, such a loss has greater impact on the farm economy.  The rain fed crops like green gram, sesamum etc were subjected to 80 percent of yield loss.  In respect of cotton, which is a high valve crop suffered 20 percent yield loss.  Groundnut and Maize suffered losses of 65 percent respectively.

7.1.14. The recursive droughts on one hand and the increasing reliance on well irrigation has put severe pressure on ground water and resulted in falling ground water tables throughout the district.  Well irrigation, which is supposed to provide security against drought, is slowly loosing its ground.  Thus, fast depleting ground water formed a limit to sustained agriculture in the district.

7.1.15. The unusual weather conditions that prevailed in 1997-98 have inflicted severe losses for all the crops due to outbreak of pests, absence of seasonal effects and excessive later rains.  Inspite of their best efforts to control the pests, farmers were not able to minimise the losses.  Though the magnitude of productivity losses is varying between different crops, the effect on cotton proved to be disastrous.

7.1.16. Apart from these adverse environmental conditions, the agricultural practices, which are in vogue, are identified as limiting factors to increased agricultural production.  Selection of crops like cotton, unsuitable to regional soils, monoculture practices, absence of crop diversification, excess use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides, lack of scientific methods of cultivation, lack of adequate knowledge about the repercussions of existing practices etc., are some of the main factors affecting the productivity of crops.  These factors contributed for wide gap between the potential yield and actual yields realised by the farmers.  It is also brought out clearly that the wide yield variations at the inter-farm level and at the intra-farm level over time.  These practices have not only contributed to yield losses but also led to cost escalation, loss of soil productivity growing pest resistance and such other problems have emerged as limits to agricultural development.

7.1.17.            Evidence on yield increasing technologies in the early period of green revolution in Andhra Pradesh has brought out clearly that it was able to increase the yield but failed to give economic returns for important crops like rice, maize and jowar.  Coming to the present position, the sample study clearly reveals that the newly introduced crops gave more gross returns as compared to other crops like rice, maize and groundnut.  These crops have also pushed up the costs to a greater height more particularly the paid costs.  Except rice, no other crop is able to give returns over operational costs.  From the point of view of net returns, the negative returns are more for these commercial crops gross returns/cost ratios are less than one for all the crops and indicates uneconomical nature of all the crops.

7.1.18. The effect of 197-98 has further worsened the return position owing to the dual effects of falling yields on one hand rising costs on the other.

7.1.19. Inter-temporal comparison of returns and costs shows that cotton and chilly which were realising positive returns in the mid-seventies, started getting negative returns by now.  During this period, while the costs recorded 6 to 7 times increase the returns accounted only 2 to 3 times increase.  This exhibits no doubt the deteriorating economic position of the small farm community.  Thus, the emerging farming conditions portend the gathering agrarian crisis in the district agriculture.

7.2.1.   In the light of the deteriorating farming conditions in the district, the study explores the specific conditions, which prompted farmers to commit suicides.  The socio-economic background of the 50 deceased farm households indicates that the suicides cut across all the caste groups however, the backward castes account for more than two thirds.  By and large, youth has succumbed to these tragic deaths where three - fourths of suicides are in he age group of less than 40 years.  The study further reveals that the land holdings of the deceased families are very small.  86 percent of holdings is less than 4 acres.  They are not viable from the point of view of commercial crops and other farm assets like well irrigation electric pumpsets and bullocks etc.  As a result, 50 percent of the deceased families have resorted to lease-in land.  Adoption of cotton and chilly has no doubt prompted them to lease-in land to make a viable operational unit.

7.2.2.   In the face of growing needs of the family, dwindling irrigation sources and unrenumerative prices of traditional crops like jowar, green gram, sesamum etc., they have shifted to rice, maize and groundnut in the beginning and later to cotton and chilly.  At present cotton has emerged as the major crop where 90 percent of the deceased families have grown cotton.  While one-third have grown cotton exclusively as a monoculture practice another one-third raised cotton along with other crops.  However, these farmers were late adopters and got inspiration from the better yields obtained in the village in the initial periods.

7.2.3.   As a measure of security against drought and to ensure dependable irrigation, farmers took recourse to development of well irrigation.  An important characteristic feature is that well irrigation by far the largest source of irrigation accounting for three-fourths.  About one-third of the wells are being dug under the subsidy schemes of the government however, in rest of the cases it has come from private sources.  Investment on well digging ranged between Rs.50000 to 1 lakh.  Further, ever depleting ground water has necessitated deepening of wells and laying in-well bores required amounts in the range of Rs.10000 to Rs. 15000, which has solely come from private sources.  Inspite of the best efforts, the position obtained in 1997-98 shows that one-fourth of the wells could yield sufficient water in another one-fourth cases water supply was quite inadequate and rest were almost dried-up.

7.2.4.   The periodic investment needs of well irrigation development, acquisition of farm assets and the cash inputs to raise these commercial crop raised the demand for both long term as well as short term credit to new heights.  The institutional credit supply being hardly less than 10 percent they depended more on private sources.  The end result is the emergence of informal credit markets in agriculture in the form of commission agents and pesticide dealers and sub-dealers, local sources and relatives.  The greater cash requirements and high value nature of cotton and chilly has raised the importance of commission agents and pesticide dealers.  Thus, new elements of credit relations with inter relation with input and output markets have emerged.  The unique feature of these markets is that they not only provide the credit at higher rates of interest but also deal with input supply and output marketing.  It is in this sphere, that these credit markets resorted to extraction in different forms such as higher prices to inputs, promoting unnecessary and excess and spurious pesticides and very high rates of interest.

7.2.5.   Added to these, the cultivation practices which the farmers have followed in the absence of knowledge and proper extension services proved to be expensive but also led to long term disastrous consequences like soil degradation, pest resistance and the consequent yield losses in the last few years.  The practice of monoculture, excessive and indiscriminate use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides placed limits on the increased productivity.  The crop losses have been severe under the adverse weather conditions that prevailed in 1997-98.  Inspite of their best effort they could non prevent crop losses.  The abundant faith, which the farmers held on new technology, has relegated the traditional wisdom to back seat.

7.2.6.   The field study reveals that the growing debt burden and crop failures over time are attributed as primary reasons for farmer’s suicides.  All the deceased farmers suffer from indebtedness.  The average debt is worked out to be Rs.50000.  However, three-fourths concentrated in the range of Rs.25000 to Rs.1 lakh.  Old debts comprise 58 percent of the total debt while remaining 42 percent is the current debt.  The debt was growing mostly on account of investments in wells and other farm assets, intermittent crop gradual decline in return-cost position over time, high interest rates, and the social expenditure.  Failure of well irrigation, periodic occurrence of droughts, adverse weather conditions, pest resistance, indiscriminate use of pesticides, monoculture practices, defective seeds and spurious pesticides are identified as important factors responsible for crop failures.  The current debt, which constitutes 42 percent of total debt, arose on account of mostly crop failure in the current year.

7.2.7.            Ultimately, it is the debt, which has become burden some as compared to their meagre physical assets.  It has engulfed them in a deep financial crisis from which they could not come out.  It has taken to such a brink that even a minute sensitive act could lead them to extreme step of committing suicide.

7.2.8.   A cursory look into the spread of cotton and suicides indicates a close correlation both at the interregional and inter-district levels and with in the district, among different mandals/areas.  The conditions which led to the adoption of new technology for commercial crops and the emergence of disquieting trends in the cultivation of these crops appear to have led for a deepening crisis in the small farm economy culminating in farmer’s suicides.


Conclusion :

7.3.1.   The macro view of the state of agriculture in India as perceived in the context of a grand failure in rationalisation of land institutions and the super imposition of yield increasing technology without development of adequate infrastructure (credit, power, extension, input supplies, marketing, irrigation) show-up some disquieting features.  Now it is an established fact that the spread of new agricultural technology, which has, not only widened the regional imbalances but also disparities among different size, classes of farmers.  Small farms have lagged behind in adoption and realised reduced margins related to large farms.  Further, it has brought about crop imbalances mostly in the Semi-Arid regions, in turn causing severe stress on local resource base.  The declining capital formation, public investment, share of agriculture in Gross Domestic product, the adverse terms of trade, falling return-cost ratios are some of the disturbing trends, which emerged on the agrarian scene in India.  The emergence of tiny and small holdings, sinking employment opportunities in the rural areas and the gross neglect of Semi-Arid regions and dry land agriculture, all have further compounded the problems in Indian agriculture.  No doubt, these trends portend an agrarian crisis of larger dimension.  The present unabated suicides among the farming community in different state like Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Maharashtra and Punjab are to be understood in the light of these undesirable trends in agriculture.

7.3.2.   It is in tune with the national pattern of agriculture that the Andhra Pradesh State has followed the new agricultural technology particularly in case of rice.  Owing to favourable resource endowment, Andhra region was in the forefront in the adoption and is able to maintain it till to day.  Because of poor resource endowment, the adoption rate has been very slow in the dry tracts of Telangana and Rayalaseema.  The promotion of well irrigation has no doubt opened up some scope for spread of this technology for some time.  Because of limitation of ground water, power shortages etc., last decade witnessed a steep shift in the cropping pattern towards cotton and chilly in the Telangana region and groundnut in the Rayalaseema region.  Well irrigation emerging as a predominant source in these two regions has placed severe demand for credit, as it has to be met from mostly through private investment.  Enormous increases in farm investment for irrigation development and increased crop expenses for cotton and chilly has raised the demand for credit.

7.3.3.   The institutional sources not being geared to the task and the farming community unable to meet from own sources placed greater reliance on informal sources of credit.  Periodic occurrence of droughts, depleting ground water, adverse weather conditions, unscientific cultivation methods all have adversely affected the yields.  Further, the ever increasing cost of cultivation coupled to falling yields and unstable prices have resulted in decline in return-cost ratios leading the farming community into a debt trap.  The very fact that 40 percent of suicides are concentrated in the Telanagana area will speak of the agrarian crisis dimension in this part of the state.  Warangal district in Telangana region is also witnessing such trends in agriculture.  That the district is witnessing a bit faster transformation into commercial crops and has greater proportion of area under cotton than other districts in the Telangana, suicide deaths are relatively more in Warangal district.  Within the district, suicides are concentrated more in those mandals where cotton is a predominant crop.

7.3.4.   The field study of deceased farm households in the Warangal district revealed existence of a serious crisis in the farm front.  The study clearly shows that suicides are characteristic of small and very small farms.  The introduction of capital intensive, risky and requiring scientific methods of cultivation like cotton and chilly on small and tiny farms with poor resource base has brought with it disastrous consequences.  The failure of public agencies in providing necessary irrigation facilities, credit, extension services, and supply of other crucial inputs has further compounded the problems of small farmers.  The dire necessity of development of well irrigation and to meet the increased cash expenses farmers relied more on informal credit markets.  The present day credit arrangements in the informal sector have acquired a new character where most of the credit is linked to input supplies and output disposal and turned out to be exploitative in character.

7.3.5.   This apart, the periodic occurrence of droughts, pest menace and adverse weather conditions has not only caused instability in the yields but also in the decline of yield rates over time.  The serious and unprecedented environmental conditions of 1997-98 have disastrous effect on falling yields on almost all the crops.  The agricultural practices in the form of monoculture, indiscriminate and excess use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides have not only raised the costs but also reduced the yields.  The study further reveals that the return-cost position is deteriorating over a period of time in respect of several crops but more particularly, cotton and chilly.  All these factors together pushed the farming community in to an irretrievable debt trap.

7.3.6.   Not that the problems in agriculture are new-several studies in the past have brought out clearly the unviable nature of crops.  It is in the growing frustration that farmer’s organisations have come into existence during the last five years and have been agitating on several issues confronting the farming community in the district.  But, the growing crisis is not being taken seriously and ultimately resulted in unprecedented suicide deaths in Warangal district.

7.4.1.   To conclude, the new agricultural technology initiated in mid-sixties on irrational land tenures though, helped in raising production in food grains, it laid severe pressure on crucial resources like soil and water in the Semi-Arid region like Warangal.  In the second phase, expansion of commercial crops like cotton and chilly among small holdings in a situation of meagre physical and financial resources and the intermittent fluctuations in crop yields, superimposed exploitative input and output linked markets have highly destabilised the small farm economy culminating in large scale suicides.

7.4.2.   Thus, the present suicides by the farming community are the result of failure of both agrarian institutions and the technology.  In view of the complex and deep-rooted present agrarian crisis, the need of the hour is not only to bring reforms in land institutions but also reforms in credit, irrigation, technology etc.

7.4.3.   In the context of growing tiny holdings and nonviable nature of holdings, there is an urgent need for evolving a viable unit for agricultural operations at the farm level.  This needs to be evolved keeping in view the resources available locally.  Increased knowledge of land resources requires soil and water surveys and the development of a climatalogical data.

7.4.4.   The results of the study point up that agriculture became a gambling because it depends on rains and other environmental factors.  Scientific surveys of ground water to exploit fully the scarce ground water resources are needed.  As irrigation formed a major constraint, Sriramsagar water be released immediately which will benefit certain parts of the district.  Tanks should be reconstructed forthwith throughout the district.  For greater replenishment of ground water, watershed programmers should receive priority.  In view of increased reliance on well irrigation, there is an urgent need to prepare ground water budget for each area by making water balance studies.

7.4.5.   Dry farming areas should receive proper attention and evolve a viable high yielding technology for rain fed areas.  There is an urgent need to evolve agricultural technology suited to small farmer conditions.  The inter-crop imbalance that resulted from excess dependence on risky commercial crops needs to be corrected keeping in view the stability and income generation.  There is a need for searching ways to diversify and intensify farm operations to promote full employment and increased incomes.

7.4.6.   Risk reduction through local adaptive testing and research on new varieties of seeds is essential.  Also employ adaptive research in trails on farmer’s fields as part of extension and input delivery.  Extension agency should be geared to the task by improving the manpower and ensuring exclusive extension role rather than administrative role.

7.4.7.   The rationality of mixed cropping, bio-fertilization, etc., and revival of traditional wisdom in plant protection be given proper attention.  They serve double purpose of providing stability and security on one hand and minimising the costs on the other.  A suitable crop technology must be evolved keeping in view the local resource position and feasibility of adoption, particularly keeping in view the small farmer.  It is also essential to aid in obtaining better subjective estimates of profit and risk variability on their farms from the use of new technology.

7.4.8.   Aiding farm product price stability is another important area, which calls for urgent action.  Fixing the support price based on the cost of cultivation is an appropriate way.  Moreover, the price should be announced even prior to the commencement of sowing season and maintain that price till the end of the year.  Market structure problems need greater attention and must be reformed.

7.4.9.   There is an urgent need to attend to the problem of persistently unfavourable terms of trade for agricultural sector on a priority basis.  It will help in achieving not only economic viability of crops but also ensuring equity at the inter-sectoral level.  It is high time that crop insurance be introduced at the earliest to provide security against drought and other environmental conditions as pest outbreak etc.

7.4.10. In view of serious capital starvation and indebtedness, land must be accompanied by an adequate, properly supervised credit programme, one that gets inputs to the farmers, makes sure they are correctly used and does not serve only the most able.  Farmer credit system should be introduced so as to enable him assured, timely and required credit.

7.4.11. That the farmers are taking recourse to suicides in several parts of the country is indicative of a serious crisis, it is high time that a comprehensive National Agricultural policy be formulated soon.

7.4.12. The theory and policy mix should incorporate human elements as central to the whole development exercise and treat the human complexities as a serious consideration.  The platform of political action steadfastly ignores the complexity of the deepening crisis of the farming community.  As a result, the farming community is full of tensions.

7.4.13. That the deceased families are put to lot of human suffering, they deserve all the support that raises confidence in them that there is a ‘human element’ in governance too.  Moreover, there is urgency to prevent such disastrous consequences from repeating in future with a will to do.


Select Bibliography (Annex - I)


1.            Government of India, Department of Agriculture and Co-operation Ministry of Agriculture, Aqricultural Policies and Programmes :

Report of the High Powered Committee 1990.


2.            Government of Andhra Pradesh, Finance & Planning (Planning wing) Department: Andhra Pradesh - Four Decades of Development 1997.

3.            Government of Andhra Pradesh, Planning and Co-operation Department :  Perspective plan for Telangana Resource Inventory : Vol. I. 1972

4.         Ground Water News - First Annual Number, Vol. II No.2, November 1983 - P.18.

5.         Indian Society of Agricultural Economics, Bomabay:  Comparative Experience of Agricultural Development in Developing Countries of Asia and the South - East Since World War II. 1972.

6.            National Council of Applied Economic Research :  Techno - Economic Survey of Andhra Pradesh, New Delhi - 1962.

7.            Stevens R.D. (Ed), Tradition and Dynamics in small Farm Agriculture - Economic Studies in Asia, Africa, and Latin America, The Iowa State University Press/Ames 1977.

8.            Suryanarayuana K.S.,  Final Technical Report - Economic Aspects of yield Increasing Technology in Poducing Food grains in Andhra Pradesh, 1980.

A.P Agricultural University, Department of Agricultural Economics, Rajendranagar, Hyderabad.

9.         Jyothi Rani, T. & Girija Rani, H, “Rural Credit Flow - Service Area Approach - A Microlevel Study” Paper presented at the XVI Annual Conference of Andhra Preadesh Economic Association held during 10-11, January, 1998 at Madanapalli, Chittoor.

10.            Ramanuja Rao, K.

“Rural Credit - Forced Deaths of Farmers - A Sociological perspective” paper presented at the XVI Annual Conference of Andhra Preadesh Economic Association held during 10-11, January, 1998 at Madanapalli, Chittoor.

11.            Sudarshan Reddy, A. “Irrigation Development in Andhra Pradesh - A Cross Section Study” - Paper presented at the third Annual Conference of A.P. Economic Association held at Kavali during 19 -20 January 1985.

12.            Sudarshan Reddy, A., M.S. Reddy, Sudarshan, P., “Dynamics of Production Decisions in Farming  - A case study of cash crops in A.P.” the Economic Times 12th December 1977 p.7.

13.            Sudarshan Reddy. A, & Venkateshwar Rao, B., Caste Occupations - Status, Mobility and Informalism - A case study of Ravirala Village in Warangal District”.  Paper presented at the XI Annual Conference of APAE held at Nandyal during 20-21 February 1993.


Annex - II

Definitions and Concepts:

HYV                :            High Yielding Variety

IADP   :            Intensive Agricultural District Programme

IAAP   :            Intensive Agricultural Areas Programme

LOCAL            :            Varieties other than HYV

SFDA  :            Small Farmers Development Agency.

MFAL :            Marginal Farmers and Agricultural Labourer’s Agency

DRDA :            District Rural Development Agency

Units    :

Kgs.     :            Kilograms

Qtls      :            Quintals

Ac        :            Acres

Ha        :            Hectare


Concepts and Terms used:

Productivity     : Average yield per acre

Operational holding : Operational holding is the land which is operated by a single person alone or with the assistance of others, irrespective of title or possession and within the cluster of villages.

Density of Population : Density of Population refers to number of persons/population per unit area i.e. square kilometer.

Farm family      : Farm Family refers to the members of agricultural households.

Work force      : Actual number of family members working on the farm.

Farm Size        : Farm size, measured in land area cultivated defined as the base unit on which capital and labour are applied.  Small farm refers to operational holding below 5 acres.

Farm Investment

                       : Farm investment refers to investment made on land farm buildings, machinery and implements, and livestock.

Seeds              : For most of the Crops, seeds are purchased, and therefore enter into paid costs.  Only in the case of groundnut some farmers used owned seeds, which are valued at the prevailing prices at the time of sowing.

Manure            : Manure is primarily farm-made and therefore it is imputed at the prevailing rate in the village.

Fertilizers and Pesticides : They are all purchased.  Therefore enter into paid costs Transport costs are added to market prices.

Irrigation          : Irrigation is valued on the basis of prevailing rates of water supplies.  It has two components: Actual payments in the form of electricity bills, repairs and other expenses are  apportioned on average and are shown as paid out costs.

Interest on Working Capital : Twelve percent interest per annum is charged on the operating costs minus of family labour in respect of chilly & Cotton for other crops it is changed for six months only.

Depreciation on Farm Buildings Livestock and Implements :

                       In proportion to the average depreciation per annum.  Depreciation for wells is 5 percent per annum.  All the farm assets are evaluated at the prevailing market prices in the villages.

Gross Returns : Crop yields are multiplied by the average market prices in the busy seasons of respective crops.  Transport costs, marketing charges are deducted from the market price to arrive at gross returns obtained by farmers.

Net returns :   Gross Returns - Total Costs (Cost C)


Concepts of Costs :

1.    Paid Costs : Paid costs refers to the costs which are actually paid for using various inputs in farming.

2. Operational Costs : Include value of family labour

                       + value of human hired labour

                       *+ Value of owned and hired bullock labour

                       + Value of owned and hired machine labour

                       + Value of seeds (Farm grown or purchased)

                       + Value of manure and fertilizer.

                       + Value of insecticides and pesticides

                       + Irrigation changes

                       + Interest on working capital.

3.       Fixed Costs : Include: depreciation,

                       + Rental Value of owned land

                       + Land Revenue and

                       + Interest on Fixed Capital

4.       Total Costs : Operational costs + Fixed Costs

          (Cost C)

Components of Costs :

Human Labour : Includes family labour, hired labour and in a few cases attached labour.  To the extent of wage labour, they enter in to paid costs.  Male Family labour is imputed at average per day rate on the basis of wages of attached farm servants.  Female family labour is inputed at the prevailing wage rates of female workers.  They are worked out only for active labour in different farm operations like ploughig, weeding, sowing, inter-culture, irrigation and picking/harvesting and do not include grazing, supervision & Management.

Bullock Labour : Owned bullock labour is valued on the basis of total number of days of use multiplied by usual rates prevailing in the village.  This will be on the lower side.  Where bullock labour is hired, it enters paid costs.

Machine power : On small farms most of the operations are performed with least use of machine, they do not farm considerable part.

Water Table : The upper surface of the zone or saturation is called water table, which is controlled generally by the nature of land surface.

Draw down :  The difference between static water level and pumping level provided for the specific discharge and pumping period.

Ground water mining : Pumping ground water from a basin, more than the safe yield, there by extracting ground water which had accumulated over a long period of time.

Appendix Table: 2.1.1. :


Distribution of working population in Andhra Pradesh 1961-1991


Year       Cultivators      Agricultural                 Total

                                 Workers          Workers

1961        74,86,819        53,36,494     1,86,63,042

            (40.10)            (28.60)               (100)

1971        57,94,701        68,28,685     1,80,05,999

            (32.18)            (37.92)               (100)

1981        74,07,938        83,25,017     2,26,29,101

            (32.73)            (36.80)               (100)

1991        78,91,167     1,16,25,159     2,84,45,482

                 (28)              (41.0)               (100)


Note: Figures in parentheses indicate percentages to total.


Source: Census handbooks, Andhra Pradesh for Respective



2.1.3.            Appendix Table:


Number and Percentage of operational Holdings and Area operated-Andhra Pradesh.


         Size     1976-77   1990-1991

        Class      Number        Area      Number        Area

Below 0.5 ha.        17,23,737          4,72,565        31,97,286          8,76,565

              (28.0)                (3.3)              (34.4)                (6.1)

0.5 to 1.00        11,44,259          8,63,477        20,13,417        14,92,203

              (18.6)                (6.0)              (21.7)              (10.3)

1.0  to 2.00 12,51,851 18,35,520 19,71,862 28,26,567

        (20.3)        (12.8)       (21.20        (19.5)

2.0  to 4.00 10,72,414 29,92,501 13,45,227 36,39,703

        (17.5)        (20.8)        (14.8)        (25.2)

Above 4.ha.          9,61,753        82,15,611          7,62,550        56,25,097

              (15.6)              (57.1)                (8.2)              (38.9)

Total        61,54,014     1,43,79,674        92,90,342     1,44,60,135

               (100)               (100)               (100)               (100)



Note:  Figures in parenthesis indicate percentages:


Source:  Agricultural census reports for respective years.


Table 2.1.3:

Index numbers of Area, Productivity and Production for Selected Crops in A.P.


Crop/Crop Group     (Base Triennium ending 1969-70)

                Area            productivity            Production

Crops which lost Area

1.   Jowar 40.1 181.4 72.8

2.   Bajra  29.0      159.4  46.3

3.    Rabi   45.0       142.0 63.9

4.    Bengal Gram        73.2      186.8      136.7

5.    Hourse Gram        31.2      274.0        85.4

6.    Sesamum        69.6      124.7        86.8

7.    Lin seed        63.4      127.2        80.8

8.    Castor        86.6      127.2      110.1

9.    Mesta 88.1      158.3      139.4

10.  Tobacco        81.1      228.2      184.9


11.  Crops which gained marginally :

12.  Rice 111.3      189.3      210.7

13.  Green gram      106.8      316.5      338.1

14.  Crops which gained substantially :

15.  Mazie      135.9      235.7      320.4

16.  Red gram      171.0        59.3      101.4

17.  Black gram      262.4      330.4      870.5

18.  Groundnut      179.0      110.2      197.3

19.  Cotton      255.6      359.9      919.8

Sugar Cane 194.6 56.2 109.4

20.  Chilly      133.2      518.1      689.9

Toatal Cereals 68.8 190.0 179.6

Total Pulses 110-.6   221.1 290.6

Total Food Grains 75.3 191.9 184.4

Total Oil Seeds 150.2 111.1 185.2

Total Fibres 219.6 296.4 697.5

Total Mis. Crops 129.1 137.1 227.5

Total Non-Food Crops 156.1 130.9 232.7

All Commodities   93.9 160.3 201.7


Source: Season and crop reports A.P. for respective years.


Appendix Table 2.1.4.  :

Area of Cotton Crop Among the Districts and Regions of Andhra Pradesh 1982-83  --- 1992-93


Sl.No.            District/Region 1982-1983    1992-1993

                Area       Percentage                Area       Percentage

Srikakulam  32        --       20        --

Vizianagaram 1        --       98        --

Visaakhapatnam      --        --     397  (0.04)

East Godavari     949    (0.2)   6501    (0.8)

West Godavari       81        --   1660    (0.2)

Krishna   4,545    (1.0)   1001    (2.0)

Guntur 1,20,816  (27.2) 1,83368 (22.8)

Prakasham 59,291  (13.4) 63955    (7.9)

Nellore 3,762    (0.8)   1911    (0.2)

Coastal Andha            1,89,457        (42.7)            2,73,911        (34.0)

Kurnool 87,294  (19.7) 87.555  (10.8)

Ananthapur 14,083    (3.2) 14,139  (1.75)

Cuddapah  3,967    (0.9)  6,645    (0.8)

Chittoor         4        --         2        --

Rayalaseema            1,05,348        (23.8)            1,08,341        (13.4)

Ranga Reddy     103  (0.02) 19,112    (2.4)

 Hyderabad  --        --        --        --

Nizamabad  5,348    (1.2) 14,964    (1.8)

Medak 657    (0.1) 11,406    (1.4)          

Mahbubnagar   4751    (1.0) 37495    (4.6)

Nalogonda 427    (0.1) 37922   ( 4.7)

Warangal 3548    (0.8) 62635    (7.8)

Khammam 215        -- 43770    (5.4)

Karimnager  57        -- 33594    (4.2)

Adilabad 132978 (30.0) 161646 (20.0)

Telangana 148084 (33.5) 422544 (52.5)

Andhara Pradesh 442889 (100) 804796 (100)


Note  :  Figures in parentheses indicate percentage to total A.P.

Source: Statistical Abstracts of A.P. for Respective Years




Table 2.1.5. :

Net Area Irrigated by Sources - Region wise 1982-83 (in hectares)

            Coastal      Rayalseema        Telangana            Andhra Pradesh


Canals          1294618            158603            289428          1742649

              (64.7)              (33.1)              (27.7)              (49.4)

Tanks 4720254              78170            354120            852544

              (21.0)              (16.4)              (33.8)              (24.2)

Tube wells            156927                4681              11039            172647

                (7.8)                (1.0)                (1.0)                (4.9)

Other wells              91341            222917            351576            665834

                (4.6)              (46.5)              (33.7)              (38.9)

Other Sources              38337              14720              40056              93113

                (1.9)                (3.0)                (3.8)                (2.6)

Total  2001477            479091          1046219          3526787

               (100)               (100)               (100)               (100)

Area Inrrigated            506194            116393            368477            991064

More than once

Gross Area Irrigated          2507671            595484          1414696          4517851

Canals          1312901            147064            266999          1726964

              (59.0)              (26.5)              (21.4)              (42.9)

Tanks  447319              54987            226193            728499

              (20.2)                (9.9)              (18.0)              (18.1)

Tube Wells            217219              68217              98872            384366

                (9.8)              (12.3)                (7.9)                (9.5)

Other Wells            155008            270284            601579          1026871

                (7.0)              (48.8)              (48.1)              (25.5)

Other Sources              91372              13659              57145            162176

                (4.0)                (2.5)                (4.6)                (4.0)

Total  2223819            554269          1250788          4028876

               (100)               (100)               (100)               (100)

Area Irrigated            570325            128729            357151          1056205

More than once

Gross Area Irrigated          2794144            682998          1607939          5085081


Note : Figures in parenthesis indicate percentages to total net area irrigated :

Source : Statistical Abstract of A.P.-1982-83 and 1992-93


Appendix table 2.1.6.  :

Per capita Incomes Ranked by Districts :


Rank - District            Per capita Income Rs.            Classification


1.         Guntur            360

2.         Krisha            307

3.            Hyderabad      274            High

4.            Nizamabad      274

5.         West Godavari    271


6.            Kurnool           252

7.         East Godavari    244

8.            Ananthapur     243            Medium

9.         Nellore            230

Cuddapah  228

Khammam 220


Adilabad    206

Nalgonda   201

Karimnagar      198

Chittoor     187     Low

Srikakulam 186

Mahabubnagar      184


Medak 175

Visakhapatnam      166    Very Low

Waranagal 150


Andhra Pradesh (State)      232

All - Inida      289


Source : NCAER Estimates






Appendix Table 2.1.7. :

District-wise Poverty Levels in Andhra Pradesh in 1977-78

(Poverty line :Es.50/- per month)

Districts Percentage of persons below poverty line

Srikakulam 71.93

Vishakhapatnam 59.02

East Godavari 50.19

West Godavari 42.09

Krishna 37.11

Guntur 35.11

Prakasham 47.96

Nellore 47.84

Chittoor 52.04

Cuddapah 51.30

Ananthapur 69.57

Kurnool 66.04

Mahabubnagar 64.00

Hyderabad 61.93

Medak 71.22

Nizamabad 41.71

Adilabad 74.60

Karimnagar 78.61

Warangal 72.80

Khammam 37.80

Nalgonda 29.93

(Source  : “Levels of living in Andhra Pradesh” by CESS; Hyderabad)













Appendix  Table 3.1.1. :

Number and Area of Operational Holdings According to Size- Warangal

Size (ha)     1976-77   1990-1991

                  Number        Area      Number        Area

1.  Below 0.5              84117              24590            160121              45506

              (27.5)                (3.5)              (33.4)                (6.8)

2.  0.5 to 1.00              56548              43680            109695              81460

              (18.5)                (6.2)              (22.8)              (12.0)

3.  1.0 to 2.0              62282              92035            115672            165967

              (20.4)              (13.0)              (24.0)              (24.7)

     Total (1 to 3)        202947            160305            385488            292933

              (66.5)              (22.7)              (80.2)              (43.5)

4.  2.0 to 4.0              53868            147884              65883            179586

        (17.6)        (20.9)        (13.7)        (26.6)

5.  Above 4.0              48680            398748              29361            201605                      

              (15.9)              (56.4)                (6.1)              (29.9)

     Toatal            305495            706937            480732            674124


Note : Figures in parentheses indicate percentages to total

Source : Statistical Abstracts of A.P.-1976-77 and 1990-91




















Appendix Table 3.1.2. :

Annual Rainfal Position in Warangal District : 1982-1983  -  1997-1998

(Rainfall in mm)

Year Rainfall

1982-83 899.0

1983-84 1,443.0

1984.85 1771.7

1985-86 854.3

1986-87 946.5

1987-88 1,055.3

1988-89 1,504.0

1989-90 1,526.7

1990-91 1,001.6

1991-92 787.4

1992-93 824.5

1993-94 883.0

1994-95 1,132.9

1995-96 1,049.6

1996-97 1,185.8

1997-98 771.8


Source :Warangal District Planning Office






Appendix Table. : 3.1.3. :

Source wise Area Irrigated in Warangal District :

Sl.No.  Source            1967-68        1982-83        1992-93

1.         Canals            10521            1081            1911

                (7.9)            (0.8)            (1.0)

2.         Tanks            90649            77697            58748

              (67.9)            (56.9)            (29.0)

3.         Other wells    29542            53110            137245*

              (22.1)            (38.8)            (67.8)

4.         Other Sources   2834            4759            4458

                (2.1)            (3.5)            (2.2)

5.         Net Area Irrigated            133546            136647            202362

               (100)            (100)            (100)

6.         Gross Area Irrigated            168346            187751            224797


Note :   Figures in Parenthesis indicate percentages to Net Area Irrigated.

*          Include area irrigated under tubewells to the extent of 3895 ha.

Source : Statistical Abstracts of A.P. for Respective Years









Appendix Table 3.1.4. :

Cropping Pattern in Warangal District :

Crop  1982-83          1992-93

                Area       Percentage                Area       Percentage

Rice     130267              (21.7)           109837              (23.0)

Jowar  153407              (25.5)             31157                (6.5)

Maize    45650                (7.6)             31765                (6.8)

Total Cereals           350504              (58.4)           173662              (36.4)

Total Food Grains  473518              (78.8)           245933              (51.5)

Green gram           105391              (17.5)             61534              (12.9)

Total Pulses           123014              (20.5)             72271              (15.1)

Groundnut             63371              (10.6)             79184              (16.6)

Sesamum             16678                (2.8)             21515              (12.9)

Total Oil Seeds             96304              (16.0)           119978              (25.1)

Cotton     3548                (0.6)             62635              (13.1)                      

Chillies   17923                (3.0)             34059                (7.1)                      

Toatal Food Crops  495818              (82.6)           291407              (61.0)

Total Non-Food Crops           104498              (17.4)           185786              (39.0)

Total Cropped Area    600316            (100.0)           477193            (100.0)

Note :   Figures in parenthesis indicate percentage to total cropped area.

Source : Season and Crop Rreports of A.P. for 1982-83 and 1992-93

Appendix table 3.1.5 :

Comparative Statement of District Credit Plan Targets and Achievements during 1988-98


(Rupees in Lakhs)

Sector/ (A) Agricultrue (1+2+3) 1. Crop Loans 2. Term Loans          3. Allied Activities

Year              target                Achievement   %                       Target                Achievement   %                       Target                Achievement   %                       Target                Achievement   %

1988-89    5500.39                     5236.17      95                     4046.36                     4212.39   104                     1100.60                      754.29       68                      353.43                      269.46       76

1989-90    5867.14                     4485.14      76                     4470.75                     3209.73      72                     1014.30                      917.46       90                      382.09                      357.95       94

1990-91    6030.97                     3132.48      52                     4163.64                     1973.09      47                     1435.11                      796.73       56                      432.22                      362.66       84

1991-92    6475.35                     3019.18      47                     4303.00                     2033.21      47                     1515.62                      638.16       42                      656.73                      347.81       53

1992-93    5704.13                     4288.24      75                     4811.82                     3226.18      67                      656.97                      839.17    128                      235.34                      222.89       95

1993-94    4997.88                     4188.44      84                     3689.84                     2970.94      81                      987.34                     1037.79   104                      220.17                      185.71       58

1994-95    5681.61                     4173.41      73                     3943.14                     3247.42      82                     1308.34                      552.78       42                      430.13                      373.21       97

1995-96    7172.87                     4853.98      68                     4816.54                     3603.35      75                     1605.69                      878.77       54                      750.64                      371.87       50

1996-97    8340.09                     6750.86      80                     6239.79                     5654.52      91                     1427.35                      792.85       50                      672.95                      376.49       56

1997-98   10567.44      --                           -- 8023.00                           --              --                     1669.64        --                           --    874.80                           --              --


Source :           1)  Service Are Credit Plan 1993-94 Warangal District.

                        2) Service Area Credit plan 1997-98 Warangal District.













Appendix Table 3.1.6. :

Yields of Different Crops in Warangal District (1955-’56 - 1994-95)

(Yields in Kgs per ha.)

Sl.No.      Crop          1955-56          1967-68          1982-83          1994-95

1.       Rice 230          528 1750          2673

2.       Jowar          152  172          660  445

3.       Maize          258  269          1430          2435     

4.          Groundnut       218  294          1060 816

5.          Sesamum       48      50          100  217

6.       Castor          68      81          220  406         

7.       Chillies  -          -       720          2200     

8.       Cotton  -          76.6          1100     -         

                                                                  Kgs of lint


Source : Warangal District Planning Office










Appendix Table 3.1.7 :

Agricultural Product Annual Arrivals and Prices in Warangal Grain Market 1988-89 to 1997-98

(Arrivals in Quintals : Price per Quintal in Rs.)

Year      Cotton              Chilles                 Rice              Maize        Groundnut

             Arrival               Price            Arrivals               Price            Arrivals               Price            Arrivals               Price            Arrivals               Price

1988-89           510290                 786           178907               1664           601530                 248             39759                 228           158384                 552

1989-90           564290                 761           256413               1390           684011                 257             59595                 185           134364                 588

1990-91           432364                 785           235454               1243           610725                 257           113370                 207           142789                 717

1991-92           373430               1233           254712               1976           491036                 342           164318                 341           134737                 847

1992-93           572643               1040           175602               2162           302927                 360           101644                 305           107699                 962

1993-94           572999             12578           266314                 912           298049                 427             82729                 267           154439                 779

1994-95           676993               1809           238171               1990           280763                 442             63369                 379             70171                 979

1995-96         1135972               1790           268208               2571           329411                 466           104977                 400             72281               1050

1996-97         1338300               1618           279534               2193           324805                 525             96406                 428             71148                 977

1997-98           948456                                             


Source : Warangal Grain Market Office










Appendix Table 3.1.8 : Busy season Arrivals and prices of Different Crops in Warangal District (1988-89 to 1997-98)     (Arrivals in Quintals and Prices in Rupees)

Cotton Arrivals and prices

Year December            January          February

            Arrivals              Prices             Arrivals              Prices             Arrivals              Prices

1988-89           112471                 835           121030                 836             14483                 715

1989-90 84357                 778             69682                 746             44251                 731

1990-91 67750                 829             28808                 833             23486                 818

1991-92 63434               1449             37961               1443             20033               1313

1992-93 76525                 997             69203                 926             54836                 932

1993-94           101697               1339             76854               1472             44588               1513

1994-95           103301               2057             54628               2263             93775               2024

1995-96           181161               1829           231258               1727           161485               1574

1996-97           194833               1688           147336               1686           227601               1707

1997-98           262108               1884           184698               2272           140739               2238


Source : Warangal Grain Marketing Office












Appendix Table 3.1.8. :                                                           

Arrivals and Prices of Chilly :


Year     January          February              March

            Arrivals              Prices             Arrivals              Prices             Arrivals              Prices

1988-89 30611                 864             61730               2071             58545               1930

1989-90 24309               7601             50942               6451             72085                 796

1990-91 10301               1079             26699               1174             16449               1334

1991-92 42460               2279             87533               2361             53609               2226

1992-93 18795               1344             49645               1114             59203                 972

1993-94 10679               1186             43994               1055             74504               1254

1994-95  5438               2296             37585               2034             69810               1896

1995-96 11177               3030             26965               2464             78352               2226

1996-97  6919               1908             29593               1702             89750               1444

1997-98  9203                      -                      -                      -                      -                      -














Appendix Table 3.1.8.

Rice Arrivals and Prices :

Year December            January                      

                 Fine             Course             Course                 Fine

                     A                     P                      A                     P                      A                     P                      A                     P                      

1988-89 68574                  226              32618                  190              23783                  201              67615                  236

1989-90 27302                  238              95109                  203              28844                  204              52660                  228

1990-91 70236                  241              43906                  207              15988                  219              42862                  265

1991-92 59373                  366              24293                  307                9927                  330              47816                  355

1992-93 47231                  333              29149                  311              13588                  331              33759                  349

1993-94 40016                  437              43381                  337              20207                  342              30937                  451

1994-95         -                  414                      -                  318                      -                  375                      -                  436

1995-96 22987                  423              18066                  369              17953                  853              36409                  445

1996-97 35113                  474              41076                  418              27043                  414              13416                  490

1997-98         -                                                                    





Appendix Table 3.1.8.

Maize Arrivals and Prices :

Year       Kharif                 Rabi                      

        Prominent month        Prominent month

                     A                     P                      A                     P

1988-89                   September                   5544                   244                   February                   1054                   201

October 3901 175 March 4605 205

1989-90                   September                   9651                   220                   February                   1155                   202

October 5332 195 March 5720 202

1990-91                   September                   28170                   175                   February                   6261                   234

October 26337 171 March 7068 238

1991-92 September 40765 308 January 10103 362

October 19599 321 February 6978 354

1992-93                   September                   25456                   309                   January                   1853                   243

October 28710 264 February 3074 232

1993-94                   September                   5826                   257                   January                   1690                   283

October 40641 237 February 3509 304

1994-95                   September                   24397                   410                   January                   1432                   433

October 8573 340 February 3879 436

1995-96                   September                   21894                   394                   January                   5258                   365

October 31801 388 February 7948 358

1996-97                   September                   17956                   521                                       

October 35603 396     
















Appendix Table 3.1.8.

Groundnut Arrivals and Price :

Year       Kharif                 Rabi                      

        Prominent month         prominent month

                     A                   P                    A                   P

1988-89                   September                   7214                   474                   February                   49768                   456

October 13638 388 March 50151 465

1989-90                   September                   16345                   580                   February                   54316                   441

October 7052 565 March 30527 560

1990-91                   September                   22616                   573                   January                   31202                   721

October 3026 682 February 35103 706

1991-93 September 23461 625 January 45376 732

October 5637 828 February 37734 1032

1992-93                   September                   1712                   998                   January                   24702                   632

October 18585 795 February 30246 626

1993-94                   September                   35359                   657                   January                   34913                   652

October 21638 784 February 25296 751

1994-95                   September                   5256                   975                   January                   11792                   886

October 6328 898 February 28636 925

1995-96                   September                   13438                   1013                   January                   18739                   854

October 8958 1000 February 17352 956

1996-97                   September                   9701                   976                   February                   31615                   1090

October 10535 1028 March 10438 1097
















Appendix Table 4.1.1. :

Per Acre Costs & Returns for Cotton : 1996-97

Sl.No.       Item           Irrigated       Unirrigated

                                        Paid                Total                  Paid                 Total

                                      Costs                costs                costs                costs

1                    2                      3                      4                      5                      6

Operating Costs                     

1.    Human Labour    2960       6010 2390       3530

2.    Bullock Labour           -       600         -       450

3.    Maching Power            -       -             -       -

4.    Seed   600       600    600       600

5.    Manure   -       600         -       600

6.    Fertilisers       1870 1870       1700 1700

7.       Insecticides      2250 2250       1700 1700

8.    Irrigation & Drainage 500       1000  200       200

9.    Interstion Working Capital     1101       1545  740       1053

       Total Operational Costs        9281      14475        7330        9833

B.    Fixed Costs :

Rental Value of Owned land          -         2000                -         2000

Land Revenue             20             20             20             20

Depreciation   -         1700                -           700

Interest on Fixed Capital     2         2600               2           326

         Total Fixed Costs                 22         6320          22         3046

C.      Total Cost of Cultivation         9303      2795         7352   12879

         Yield (in Quintals)           09         09              06         06

         Price (net) in Rs.    1685      1685         1685     1685

D.     Gross Returns        14059         14059    9396         9396

E.      Returns over paid costs             4778                       2066

F.      Returns over operational Costs.                             -416                        -437

G.      Net Returns (Col.4-Col.3)                   -6736                      -3483

Return - Cost Ratio                            0.69                                    0.72

Source : Field Study











Appendix Table 4.1.2. :

Costs & Returns for Cotton : 1997-98                                (in Rs.)

Sl.No.       Item           Irrigated       Unirrigated

                                        Paid                Total                  Paid                 Total

                                      Costs                costs                costs                costs

1                    2                      3                      4                      5                      6

A.   Operating Costs                                            

1.    Human Labour    3148       6392 2435       3665

2.    Bullock Labour           -       600         -       600

3.    Maching Power            -       -             -       -

4.    Seed   600       600    600       600

5.    Manure   -       600         -       600

6.    Fertilisers       2060 2060       1860 1860

7.       Insecticides      2950 2950       2310 2310

8.    Irrigation & Drainage 500       1000  200       200

9.    Interstion Working Capital     1183       1715  960       1165

       Total Operational Costs      10441      15917      8365      10880

Fixed Costs :

Rental Value of Owned land          -         2000                -         2000

Land Revenue             20             20             20             20

Depreciation   -         1690                -           700

Interest on Fixed Capital     2         2610               2           326

         Total Fixed Costs                 22         6320          22         3046

C.      Total Cost of Cultivation         10463  22237         8387   13926

         Yield (in Quintals)          5.9         5.9            4.1         4.1

         Price (net) in Rs.    1960      1960         1960     1960

D.     Gross Returns        10950         10950    7695         7695

E.      Returns over paid costs             -691                        -1870

F.      Returns over operational Costs.                             -4967                      -3185

G.      Net Returns (Col.4-Col.3)                   -11287                    -6231

Return - Cost Ratio                               0.49                                       0.55

Source : Field study











Appendix Table 4.1.3. :

Costs & Returns for Irrigated Chillies : 1996-97 & 1997-98                        (in Rs.)

Sl.No.       Item           Irrigated       Unirrigated

                                        Paid                Total                  Paid                 Total

                                      Costs                costs                costs                costs

1                       2             3               4               5               6

Operating Costs                                                           

1.    Human Labour    3960       7006 4315       7489

2.    Bullock Labour           -       804         -       824

3.    Maching Power            -       -             -       -

4.    Seed   600       600    600       600

5.    Manure   -       900         -       900

6.    Fertilisers       2370 2370       2565 2565

7.       Insecticides      3020 3020       4210 4210

8.    Irrigation & Drainage 480       1480  480       1480

9.    Interstion Working Capital     1251       1941 1134       1424

       Total Operational Costs      11681      18121      13294      19489

B.    Fixed Costs :

10. Rental Value of Owned land          -         2030                -         2020

11.   Land Revenue   20                  20                  20                 20

12.   Depreciation -              1670                     -             1680

13.   Interest on Fixed Capital                    2              2600                    2             2600

         Total Fixed Costs                 22         6320          22         6320

C.      Total Cost of Cultivation         11703  24441         13316 25809

         Yield (in Quintals)          8.5         8.5            7.9         7.9

         Price (net) in Rs.    1685      1685         2050     2050

D.     Gross Returns        14320         14320  15848         15848

E.      Returns over paid costs   -         2639                       2554

F.      Returns over operational Costs.                             -3801                      -3641

G.      Net Returns (Col.4-Col.3)                   -10121                    -9961

Return - Cost Ratio                               0.58                                       0.61

Source : Field Study












Appendix Table 4.1.4. :

Costs & Returns : 1996-97                                                                                                (in Rs.)

Sl.No.       Item           Irrigated       Unirrigated

                                        Paid                Total                  Paid                 Total

                                      Costs                costs                costs                costs

1                   2                     3                     4                     5                     6

Operating Costs                                                           

1.    Human Labour    1160       1700 1260       1800

2.    Bullock Labour           -       700         -       700

3.    Maching Power       300       300    300       300

4.    Seed   350       350    350       350

5.    Manure   -       400         -       -

6.    Fertilisers       825    825       825    825

7.       Insecticides      250    250       250    250

8.    Irrigation & Drainage 500       1000  500       1500

9.    Interstion Working Capital       215       367  3765       388

       Total Operational Costs        3600        5892               -        6163

Fixed Costs :

10. Rental Value of Owned land          -         1000             10         1000

11. Land Revenue 10             10                -             10

12.   Depreciation -              1200                  01             1200

13.   Interest on Fixed Capital                  01                133                  11               133

         Total Fixed Costs                 11         2343      3776         2343

C.      Total Cost of Cultivation         3611      8235                      8506

         Yield (in Quintals)                        17.5                        19.6

         Price (net) in Rs.                    404                        404

D.     Gross Returns                           7068                       7927

E.      Returns over paid costs             3468                       4162

F.      Returns over operational Costs.                             1176                       1764

G.      Net Returns (Col.4-Col.3)                   -1167                      -579

Return - Cost Ratio                               0.85                                       0.93

Source : Field Study











Appendix Table 4.1.5. :

Costs & Returns for Rice : 1997-98                        (in Rs.)

Sl.No.       Item           Irrigated       Unirrigated

                                        Paid                Total                  Paid                 Total

                                      Costs                costs                costs                costs

1                   2                     3                     4                     5                     6

A.   Operating Costs                                            

1.    Human Labour    1160       1720 1290       1870

2.    Bullock Labour           -       725         -       725

3.    Maching Power       300       300    300       300

4.    Seed   375       375    375       375

5.    Manure   -       400         -       -

6.    Fertilisers       850    850       920    920

7.       Insecticides      260    260       310    310

8.    Irrigation & Drainage 500       1000  500       1500

9.    Interstion Working Capital       203       338    222       360

       Total Operational Costs        3588        5968        3917        6360

B.    Fixed Costs :

10. Rental Value of Owned land          -         1000                -         1000

11. Land Revenue 10             10             10             10

12.   Depreciation -              1200                     -             1200

13.   Interest on Fixed Capital                  01                132                  01               132

         Total Fixed Costs                 11         2342          11         2342

C.      Total Cost of Cultivation         3599      8321         3928     8702

         Yield (in Quintals)        17.2         17.2        15.8         15.8

         Price (net) in Rs.    440          440         440         440

D.     Gross Returns          7560         7560      6942         6942

E.      Returns over paid costs             3972                       3025

F.      Returns over operational Costs.                             1592                       582

G.      Net Returns (Col.4-Col.3)                   -761                        -1760

Return - Cost Ratio                               0.90                                       0.80

Source : Field Study











Appendix Table 4.1.6. :

Costs & Returns for Maize : 1996-97                                                                    (in Rs.)

Sl.No.       Item           Irrigated       Unirrigated

                                        Paid                Total                  Paid                 Total

                                      Costs                costs                costs                costs

1                   2                     3                     4                     5                     6

A.   Operating Costs                                            

1.    Human Labour      800       850    800       850

2.    Bullock Labour           -       600         -       600

3.    Maching Power         96       96        96       96

4.    Seed   250       250    250       250

5.    Manure   -       -             -       400

6.    Fertilisers       625    625       850    850

7.       Insecticides      -             -       120    120

8.    Irrigation & Drainage    -       -         500       1000

9.    Interstion Working Capital       212       290    317       475

       Total Operational Costs        1983        2711        2957        5265

B.    Fixed Costs :

10. Rental Value of Owned land          -           500                -         1000

11. Land Revenue 10             10             10             10

12.   Depreciation -                700                     -               700

13.   Interest on Fixed Capital                  01                146                  01               196

         Total Fixed Costs                 11         1356          11         1906

C.      Total Cost of Cultivation         1994      4067         2968     7171

         Yield (in Quintals)        10.4         10.4           15         15

         Price (net) in Rs.    370          370         380         380

D.     Gross Returns          3854         3854      5687         5687

E.      Returns over paid costs             1871                       2730

F.      Returns over operational Costs.                             1143                       422

G.      Net Returns (Col.4-Col.3)                   -213                        -1484

H.   Return - Cost Ratio              0.94                0.79

Source : Field Study











Appendix Table 4.1.7. :

Costs & Returns for Maize: 1997-98                    (in Rs.)

Sl.No.       Item           Irrigated       Unirrigated

                                        Paid                Total                  Paid                 Total

                                      Costs                costs                costs                costs

1                   2                     3                     4                     5                     6

A.   Operating Costs                                            

1.    Human Labour      720       850    780       1430

2.    Bullock Labour           -       600         -       600

3.    Maching Power         72       72      120       120

4.    Seed   260       260    260       260

5.    Manure   -       -             -       400

6.    Fertilisers       625    625       850    850

7.       Insecticides      -             -       130    130

8.    Irrigation & Drainage    -       -         500       1000

9.    Interstion Working Capital       101       147    158       287

       Total Operational Costs        1778        2594        2798        5077

B.    Fixed Costs :

10. Rental Value of Owned land          - 500         - 1000

11. Land Revenue 10 10        10 10

12. Depreciation            - 700         - 700

13. Interest on Fixed Capital   01 120      01 206

         Total Fixed Costs                 11         1330          11         1916

C.      Total Cost of Cultivation         1789      3924         2809     6993

         Yield (in Quintals)             9         9                13         13

         Price (net) in Rs.    400          400         289         289

D.     Gross Returns          3600         3600      3754         3754

E.      Returns over paid costs             1822                       945

F.      Returns over operational Costs.                             1006                       -1323

G.      Net Returns (Col.4-Col.3)                   -324                        -3239

H.   Return - Cost Ratio              0.91                0.53

Source : Field Study










Appendix Table 4.1.8. :

Costs & Returns for Groundnut: 1996-97                        (in Rs.)

Sl.No.       Item           Irrigated       Unirrigated

                                        Paid                Total                  Paid                 Total

                                      Costs                costs                costs                costs

1                   2                     3                     4                     5                     6

A.   Operating Costs                                            

1.    Human Labour      880       1770  600       1790

2.    Bullock Labour           -       600         -       600

3.    Maching Power            -       -             -       -

4.    Seed       -       700    600       600

5.    Manure   -       -             -       -

6.    Fertilisers -       -         150       150

7.       Insecticides      -             -       200    200

8.    Irrigation & Drainage    -       -         300       300

9.    Interstion Working Capital       105       368    222       497

       Total Operational Costs          985        3438        2072        4637

B.    Fixed Costs :

10. Rental Value of Owned land          -           500                -         1000

11. Land Revenue 10             10             10             10

12. Depreciation              -           700                -           700

13. Interest on Fixed Capital   01           146             01           206

       Total Fixed Costs 11       1356    11       1916

C.      Total Cost of Cultivation 996         4794      2083         6563

         Yield (in Quintals)          3.0         3.0            4.5         4.5

         Price (net) in Rs.    949          949         1024     1024

D.     Gross Returns          2847         2847      4606         4606

E.      Returns over paid costs             1862                       2534

F.      Returns over operational Costs.                             -591                        -31

G.      Net Returns (Col.4-Col.3)                   -1947                      -1957

H.   Return - Cost Ratio              0.59                0.70

Source : Field Study










Appendix Table 4.1.9. :

Costs & Returns for Groundnut : 1997-98                        (in Rs.)

Sl.No.       Item           Irrigated       Unirrigated

                                        Paid                Total                  Paid                 Total

                                      Costs                costs                costs                costs

1                   2                     3                     4                     5                     6

A.   Operating Costs                                            

1.    Human Labour      760       1650  640       1820

2.    Bullock Labour           -       600         -       600

3.    Maching Power            -       -             -       -

4.    Seed       -       700    600       600

5.    Manure   -       -             -       -

6.    Fertilisers -       -         150       150

7.       Insecticides      -             -       200    200

8.    Irrigation & Drainage    -       -         300       300

9.    Interstion Working Capital         45       177    113       250

       Total Operational Costs          805        3127        2003        4420

Fixed Costs :

10. Rental Value of Owned land          -           500                -         1000

11. Land Revenue 10             10             10             10

12. Depreciation              -           700                -           700

13. Interest on Fixed Capital   01           145             01           205

       Total Fixed Costs 11       1355    11       1915

C.      Total Cost of Cultivation 816         4477      2014         6365

         Yield (in Quintals)          1.5         1.5            2.2         2.2

         Price (net) in Rs.    900          900         1100     1100

D.     Gross Returns          1350         1350      2420         2420

E.      Returns over paid costs             545                         417

F.      Returns over operational Costs.                             -1777                      -2000

G.      Net Returns (Col.4-Col.3)                   -3127                      -3915

H.   Return - Cost Ratio              0.30                0.38

Source : Field Study