Praveen Mankar was a man that not just the whole village of Kotamba but the whole district of Yavatmal was very proud of.
He was a national Kabbadi champion and had just won a gold medal in body building in a national competition held in Shillong.
He was also an accomplished musician and had his own orchestra.
But mainly people remember Praveen as a very sensitive human being who was always first to help the needy and poor.
This sensitive man could not bare the grief of not being able to purchase new clothes for his daughter for Diwali and consumed poison at home on Diwali day. He was shifted at once to the closest government hospital but since it did not have adequate treatment facilities he was then taken to a private hospital but could not be saved.
Praveen had recently turned farmer after his father became too old to look after their 8 acres farm.
The damage to their soyabean crop due to unseasonal rains had caused enormous concern since their agri loan was mounting. Compounding the woes was the fact that no labour was available to harvest even the remaining crop and it was perishing too.
A very large gathering of villagers turned up for Praveen Mankar’s funeral on Monday.
Many were heard complaining that though Modi himself in a “chai pe charcha” meet in Yavatmal district prior to 2014 general elections had promised that if elected his government would ensure that soyabean farmers would get one and half times profit on the crop – and the promise had been repeated by Fadnavis in his campaigns – the ground reality was that even cost of cultivation was not being recovered from the dismal sale price of the crop.
This government had ruled out waiving of farmers’ loans and even the crop insurance scheme was tedious to implement and many farmers were left out.
Ironic then that this government has been ranked first in agricultural development by NITI.
That will be little consolation for Mankar’s grieving family and friends!