Imphal Review of Arts and Politics

Army aspirants going through a recruitment competition

Is The Nation Playing With the Future of Our Youth Through its Agnipath Scheme?

In regard to this scheme, I desire to pen down a few words of agony that have hit me hard. In the constitution of India, it says that all are equal in the eyes of law. But why there are so many impartiality among us. If a citizen of India becomes a member of Lok sabha or Rajya sabha even for a single day, he/she is entitled for a life time pension. Is it possible for an MLA stop contesting any more election in future who already won an election and had serve the nation for five years ? Are the young soldiers and officers or you the ministers not same in a democratic country like India ? I means  the leaders of this country or the ministers should not do to others what you don’t like to do upon you. A similar card has been played recently to firm your hold on the chairs through conspiracies of the political agenda like NRC or the CAB or the three farm laws. You always try to make division among us through diverting the attention from the real problems and would engage the public in a way that might not let them think about it. And what about the officers who will command the troops in the battle field. Why are the officers of this country,getting promotion after promotion, serving upto the year when their ages is 60 years or above ignoring and not covering by any type of scheme ? Since the Prime minister or the defence minister needs not to be present or go in the real battle field, you bring out this scheme for our youths. Really, this is injustice. If you continue like this in this country, there will not be any type of unity bond among the citizen.

Recently the union Cabinet have approved AGNIPATH,recruitment scheme for Indian youths of ages between 17.5 to 21 years and have completed 10/12 class for entry into general duty(GD) soldiers to serve in the Armed forces and the youths so selected and joining the forces under this scheme will be known as Agniveers. As per scheme, these Agniveers have to serve only 4 years in the Armed forces and 75% of the Agniveers that had served the nation has to leave the job after which they will get a skill certificate so that they may got preference to re-engage to State police, CAPF and others as claimed by the central government and remaining 25% of each specific batch having good physical body fitness and discipline will be enrolled in the regular/permanent Armed forces . After widespread protests across the nation, Government has also introduced one time age relaxation to 23 years in view of post covid.

We agree that unemployment rate arises due to the increase of population in the country day by day. But this scheme will not solve the above said problem. First of all you should consider the family planning and population control on one side over and above improving financial condition of the country. Another action that you should matter is that serving years of the present government employees should be limited or cut down  to 20/25 years so that the vacancy of all the concerned departments may increase. Since you already have abolished the pension facility, bringing this scheme, I think, you are playing the future of our youth through contracting basis and thrown out of job after serving only four years. Now you bring No Rank No pension even though some years back there has been discussion about the One Rank One Pension facility among the Armed forces personnel. What a great difference. We don’t expect this from a government that the people of the nation hope a lot.

It seems the youths of this country are less Indians. The youth of this country too has dreams in their life. Will this youth able to make a house or buy a land or able to make their marriage from the financial benefits of serving four years in the armed forces ?  The only question that probes in my mind is that shall the youths that had served in armed forces for four years get another job in some others departments of the country. I don’t think so because they will stop studying or preparing due to the time engage of the four years serving in the armed forces. Another big mind blowing question running in my mind is that since these 75% Agniveers, who are out from the armed forces, got the knowledge and the very basic training of the  armed forces, they may become the strong or un-challengeable militants groups as they know how to fire, how to attack or the secret tactics from their previous armed forces training. Iam least bothered to what they feel or say. But what is worth mentioning is that this scheme may become the main sources of growing the number of militant groups in the country. In another case, will these Agniveers who got training only for 6 months or a year be fit to fight with terrorists or in Jammu & Kashmir or in Arunachal to counter the foreign aggression against the country ? Or shall this six months or one year training be enough for CAPF whose different duties like border patrolling, tracking smuggling of drugs, cattle and arms, managing law and order during elections and protests, VVIP security, frisking passengers in metros and at airports, duties at militants and insurgency areas like northeast, anti-naxal duties in Chhattisgarh and Orissa ?  From this, we can conclude that this scheme will surely decrease the operational effectiveness  of the armed forces in the long run.

The most difficult thing in this world is to make someone believe at the right direction when they are blindfolded by some wrong conceptions and perceptions. What the government bringing this scheme is totally unsatisfactory to the hope of the youth they aspect. Is it not going to be a loss to the government and the armed forces by investing training charge and skill annually to the youths and serve only for four years to the nation ?  Or will these 75% Agniveers who get termination due to unfit from the armed forces be fit for state police or CAPF ? Why should not the officers who are serving in the armed forces be retired too after four years serving ? Why are these officers not covering under this scheme ? But these officers are being employed by the government until their hairs is white in colour. Why there is lot of discrimination among the citizen especially in a country like India ?  Are we all not equal in the eyes of law ?  Here I would like to say that the president or the prime minister or the defence minister of this nation should also be retired after serving four years to the nation. The Agnipath scheme will surely demoralize the coming youths since the Agniveers will always have the fear in their mind that they will be thrown out from their job after four years of serving in the armed forces. We all know that Agnipath-youth denied. The three Agricultural Farm laws-Farmers rejected. Demonetisation- Economists denied and innocent people suffered. GST- Traders refused. It is all because the leaders of this nation do not  listen to the voice of the people. Did we get the 15 lakhs in our account due to demonetisation? Don’t make the false promises upon the people of this nation.

Agniveers will be given an attractive customised monthly package along with RHA as applicable of the three services. On completion of the engagement period of four years, Agniveers will be paid one time ‘SevaNidhi’ package which shall scomprise of their contribution including interest thereon and matching contribution from the Government Of India (GOI) equal to the accumulated amount of their contribution including interest as indicated below:

Year Customised Monthly Salary Package In Agniveers

Hand (70%)

Contribution to Agniveer 

 Corpus Fund (30%)

Contribution to corpus fund by GOI
All figures in Rupees                                                        (Monthly Contribution)  
1st Year 30000 21000 9000 9000
2nd Year 33000 23100 9900 9900
3rd Year 36500 25580 10950 10950
4th Year 40000 28000 12000 12000

Total contribution in Agniveer Corpus Fund after four years Rs 5.02 Lakh Rs 5.02 Lakh


Exit after 4 Year , Along with interest, they will get Rs 11.71 i.e ( 5.02+5.02+interest) Lakh as SevaNidhi Package which will be exempted from income Tax. But there shall be no entitlement to gratuity and pensionary benefits. Agniveers will be provided non-contributory Life Insurance Cover of Rs 48 lakh only for the duration of 4 years engagement period in the Indian Armed Forces.

After launching of the Agnipath recruitment scheme, the widespread protests have broken out through out the nation against it. While several aspirants took to the streets to express their anguish against the said scheme where the trains and buses set on fire, blocking roads, attacking BJP offices and residences demanding the roll back of the said Agnipath scheme. Regarding this scenario, I would like to say that it is a big mistake on the side of the youths who show unwillingness to this scheme as they choose violent means to roll back the scheme. The youths should not destroy the public property. This scheme is made by the armed forces decision makers or the concerned ministers and why railway becomes victim for it. India is a democratic country. The youths have the very right to protest to the decision the government takes. They need to counter with non-violent method to fight with. We all know that the government had withdrawn the three farm laws due to the continuous non-violent protests collectively made by the farmers. We should also remember that India got freedom from the British rule through the Mahatma Gandhi’s non-violent means.

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