The government, deaf to the protests, is moving forward with the implementation of the recruitment program says Agnipath Yojana which it announced without warning on June 14. Without much explanation of its pros and cons, the Ministry of Defense (MoD) touted it as a “transformative measure” that will change the recruitment model for Agniveers (hereafter, soldiers, sailors and airmen who join under the Agnipath Yojana) from the current long-service – 15-year bond which ends in a lifetime pension – to a mainly short-service contract under which annual installments of recruits will serve for four years. After that, 75% of them return home without a pension. This has sparked deep anger among unemployed youths, who have already missed more than 100,000 military recruitment vacancies during the two-year lockdown, and will miss more until recruitment resumes.
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First published: Thursday, June 30, 2022. 10:30 p.m. IST