Economist GMAT Reading Comprehension Challenge Article #10

Economist GMAT Reading Comprehension Challenge Article #10

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Article: Why are Indian farmers angry?

Link: https://www.economist.com/the-economist-explains/2019/01/21/why-are-indian-farmers-angry

Article Paragraph Summaries

Farmers across India joined...Why are they angry?

  • Indian farmers were on strike protesting “rural distress issues”.
  • Farmers have been on strike many times before.
  • Every year about 12000 farmers commit suicide because of debt obligations.

The last few years have been grim...added to the hardship.

  • Weather, currency issues, gas prices, and higher taxes have put pressure on farmers.

The farmers are demanding…charge exploitative interest rates.

  • Farmers want an increase in the minimum support price, improvement in that system (make it easier for farmers to sell unsold crops to the government), and unconditional loan forgiveness.
  • The current crop support system is slow and causes loss of earnings.
  • Because of the problem farmers sell to private buyers for less money.
  • Current system of debt relief not working well.
  • It also tends not to help small farmers as they often borrow from local money lenders at exploitative rates instead of from banks (banks/financial institutions don’t like loaning to small farmers).

There are no easy answers...the threat looks ominous.

  • In order to improve the water crisis needs to be addressed.
  • “Boreholes” up from tens of thousands to 20 million deplete groundwater.
  • “Long Term Irrigation Fund” has been ineffective. Smaller steps would have been better.
  • Farmers are fed up with fancy projects and false promises and have threatened not to vote for current government (Modi).

Primary Purpose:

To explain why farmers in India are angry.

Main Idea:

Farmers in India are angry because the Government has failed to address their issues mainly related to debt relief and crop support programs.

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