New Delhi: In view of calls for Bharat Bandh on Monday (June 20, 2022) by some organisations against the Centre’s ‘Agnipath’ army recruitment scheme, several state governments have tightened their security.
From Punjab to Uttar Pradesh and Kerala, the Police are on alert and have warned people to not engage in any activity which disrupts law and order during Bharat Bandh.
Massive Agnipath protests have erupted in various states
It is noteworthy that massive protests have erupted in various states, including Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, with youths taking to the streets to express their dissatisfaction with the Agnipath scheme.
The Agnipath yojana, which was announced on June 14, provides for the recruitment of youths between the age bracket of 17-and-half years to 21 for only four years with a provision to retain 25 per cent of them for 15 more years. Later the government extended the upper age limit to 23 years for recruitment in 2022.
The Central government also then announced several incentives including reserving 10 per cent vacancies in its paramilitary and the Defence Ministry for Agnipath retirees and said it would look into any grievance about the new military recruitment scheme “with an open mind’.
Those recruited under the scheme would be known as ‘Agniveers’.
After the completion of the four-year tenure, 25 per cent of the recruits from each batch would be offered regular service.
The announcement of the new scheme came in the backdrop of recruitment into the military remaining stalled for over two years. The Army recruits 50,000 to 60,000 soldiers annually. However, the recruitment could not take place for the last two years owing to the Covid-19 pandemic.