October 2, 2023

What is Agni Path Scheme and why is there so much fuss in India?

Police have also been charged with sticks in different parts of the country to disperse these protesters.


Violent protests against the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) Agni Path scheme have erupted in several Indian states, with angry mobs attacking the homes of Indian ruling party leaders.

According to The Indian Express, angry protesters on Friday stormed the homes of Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Reno Devi and party state president Champaran Sanjay Jewal and set fire to trains in Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Telangana.

The Haryana government has also shut down internet service in several parts of the state due to poor law and order situation.

Rahul Gandhi, the leader of the opposition Congress party in India, has sharply criticized the Agni Path scheme, saying that it has been rejected by the youth.

He further added in a tweet in Hindi that “the Prime Minister does not understand what the people of the country want because they do not want to hear anything but the voices of their friends.”

More than 200 trains across India have been suspended or canceled due to violent protests, and the latest reports indicate that one person has been killed in an alleged police firing in the state of Telangana.

What is Agni Path Scheme?

On Tuesday this week, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government announced the Agni Path scheme aimed at reducing the budget for salaries and pensions of Indian military services.

Under the scheme, young boys and girls between the ages of 17 and a half to 21 will be recruited in the army for four years and only 25 per cent of them will be promoted after the expiry of their term.

Due to the protests, the government announced on Thursday night that people up to the age of 23 would now be eligible to serve in the military under the Agni Path scheme.

People who join the army under this scheme will be called ‘Agni Veer’.

After the expiry of the four-year term, the Agni Veers will be paid Rs.

What are the objections to Agni Path Scheme?

Not only ordinary people and politicians but also former army officers are protesting against the BJP’s Agni Path scheme.

Criticizing the Indian government’s scheme on Twitter, Maj. Gen. GD Bakhshi wrote, “Don’t destroy our institutions at a time when there are huge threats from Pakistan and China.”

“Don’t waste what we have just to save money,” he wrote, addressing the BJP government. Military services need both youth and experience. “

Former Indian Army Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Raj Kadian has also opposed the government’s scheme, saying it should be tried in “low-risk institutions”.

“We are testing it on our defense forces where the risk is higher,” he added. I just hope and pray that there will be no war. “

According to him, “If war breaks out, you can’t expect to die from someone who is already thinking four years later.”

Videos that went viral on social media showed a large number of young people participating in the protests.

According to Indian journalist Shaw Arora, six trains have been set on fire in three states so far during the protests.

Police have also been charged with sticks in different parts of the country to disperse these protesters.
BJP’s position

Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Reno Devi, whose house was pelted with stones by angry protesters, said, “This is not a case of attacking my house but of misleading students about the Agni Path scheme.”

Despite these violent protests, the Indian government is working to advance the Agni Path scheme. In a statement issued on Twitter on Friday morning, Home Minister Amit Shah said that “a large number of youths will benefit from the Agni Path scheme”.

He further said that under this scheme, the youth would move forward in the right direction to serve the country and brighten their future.

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