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'We are on Brink of Starvation': Story Behind Viral Photos of Farmer Using Sons Instead of Oxen

The farmer lamented that rich farmers with tractors refused to extend help when the family approached them.

Santosh Gupta | News18

Updated:August 4, 2018, 2:59 PM IST
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'We are on Brink of Starvation': Story Behind Viral Photos of Farmer Using Sons Instead of Oxen
The family’s plight went viral along with the photos of them tending to their tiny piece of land.
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Patna: Financial crisis reduced a farmer in Bihar’s Chhapra district to use his sons, instead of oxen, to plough an agricultural land. The family’s plight went viral along with the photos of them tending to their tiny piece of land.

Speaking to News18, Jawahar Rai, the distraught farmer from Makhdumpur village, broke down when asked what compelled him to use his sons as a substitute for oxen.

"We can't afford oxen. We have nothing left. Earlier, my sons worked as labourers and ferried mined sand on boats, but that also stopped. We are on verge of starvation,” Jawahar said.

Pointing to the photos, the impoverished farmer also revealed that the woman spraying seeds of maize behind his sons Amar and Ranjeet, is his wife Leelawati.

He further lamented that rich farmers with tractors refused to extend help when the family approached them. “I decided not to wait anymore as I was fearful that if it doesn't rain in the coming days, the moisture in the soil will dry up,” he said.

The family possesses ten ‘kattha’ of land, but most of the plots have become infertile due to huge amounts of sand content left behind in the soil as a result of floods.​
| Edited by: Ahona Sengupta
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