Amravati (Mah) :  Union Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari on Sunday said that farmer suicides were not a political but a socio-economic problem.

He was speaking as the chief guest at a function to mark 117th birth anniversary of Dr Panjabrao Deshmukh, founder of Shri Shivaji Education Society and the first agriculture minister of independent India, reports PTI.

Complete stoppage of farmer suicides would be the true tribute to Dr Deshmukh, he said, adding that these suicides were “not a political problem but a socio-economic one”.

Amaravati is in Vidarbha region of Maharashtra which became infamous for farmer suicides in the last decade. SSES president Arun Shelke presided over the function,

while MP Anand Adsul, guardian minister Pravin Pote, MLAs Sunil Deshmukh, Dr Anil Bonde and Dr Ashok Uike, and mayor Charanjit Kaur Nanda too were present.

Gadkari called for encouraging experiments in agriculture and use of technology to boost production. He also called for production of good quality seeds.

Saying he did not trust government-controlled agricultural universities, he urged the SSES to work for the development of agricultural technology.

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