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A few weeks earlier the country was in great turmoil, amidst violent disturbances and protests motivated by the launch of a new recruitment program for Indian citizens in all three services of the Indian defense forces. On 14th June, the Union Cabinet approved this recruitment scheme for Indian youth to serve in the armed forces. The scheme is termed as “Agnipath” and those selected under this scheme will earn recognition as “Agniveer”. Agnipath provides an opportunity for patriotic and motivated youth to serve and undergo training in the armed forces for a period of four years.
Agniveers will get an attractive monthly pay package with other essential allowances. On successful completion of the engagement period, they will be paid a one-time “Seva Nidhi” package comprising the contribution made by employers and employees along with accrued interest (Rs. 11.71 lakh). The “Seva Nidhi” which will be offered will be completely exempted from any kind of taxes, including income tax. Moreover, they will be entitled to avail a non-contributory life insurance cover of Rs. 48 lakh in case of any mishappening during their engagement period. During their period of service to the Motherland, the Agneeveers will learn several military skills and are expected to acquire a high degree of discipline, leadership qualities and various management skills.
In the management discipline, various streams have been categorized, like production and operation management, financial management, marketing management, human resource management, etc. It is not at all surprising that various theories and principles taught in management skills learning have originated in the military sphere. So the personnel serving in the armed forces will be well acquainted with the management concepts. This particular knowledge and connected skills will actually open doors to the corporate world. In this age group, most are either pursuing their undergraduate studies or have graduated and started looking for employment. However, the Agniveers will be far ahead in terms of professional experience, provided they equip themselves with the required skills as per the industry expectations. Furthermore, the amount given to the Agniveers at the end of their service can be utilized to start a business. Here, the government can come ahead and assist them with all the available financial schemes, training programs, and entrepreneurship skill development programmes by giving them priority assistance. In short, the avenues and opportunities Agnipath provides will contribute to building a strong and long-term career.
Apart from this, how Agniveer will contribute to society’s development is well explained and put forward as a solution for the internal challenges the country is facing. The main challenge is termed as “Enemy- 2.5”. This term was identified and proposed by the first Chief of Defense Staff General Bipin Rawat. He said the first adversary is China, second Pakistan and the third enemy which he symbolized by “0.5” is the enemy within the country. These anti-national individuals, groups and organizations are actually targeting and using the youth of this country as a lethal weapon against their own motherland. If we go deeper we will understand that such activities are being controlled and funded by several foreign organizations which want to defame and disturb the ecosystem of Indian society. India being the youngest country in the world and the second-largest by population has a huge potential. So to implement their anti-national objectives, these inimical forces are targeting the youth and unfortunately, they get involved in their anti-social activities. In order to safeguard the vulnerable young population from these anti-nationals, the government has come up with this strategy which is expected to safeguard them from brainwashing and will also open up for them a very vibrant and decent career. Once they enter civic life they will be in a position to help protect much of the population from undesirable influences.
Many intellectuals are criticizing Agnipath because of its short span and therefore lack of job security. But service in the armed forces is never considered as a job for earning money but rather an offering to the motherland. It is not necessary to have a huge army but it is essential to have a competent defence force. This can be achieved only if our troops get consistent and long-lasting input of recruits selected for their enthusiasm, fitness and a high degree of mental strength. In some foreign countries, it is an obligation for every citizen to serve a few years of their professional career. The reason behind such practice is to make them realise that they have certain responsibilities towards the motherland. Any developed and prosperous nation has been built by disciplined, conscientious and motivated citizens who are ready to serve it irrespective of the field or area in which they are contributing.
Regarding the unfortunate incidents, we watched in the last few weeks the violence displayed shows the success of the anti-nationals. Because of this disruption the country has faced great economic losses. The country which is already struggling after the past two years of severe pandemic experienced another setback because of this violent agitation. We should all be aware that any such incidence increases the difficulties facing the country. Many of our brothers and sisters faced great trouble and discomfort during the anti-Agnipath agitation. Yet we are confident that this programme will contribute to the improvement of society and the economy and strengthen the security of the country.