Agnipath: NSA Ajit Doval calls for perspective in light of protests
- Protests began after the announcement of the scheme on June 14
- The NSA says that violence will 'not be tolerated at all'
- Registration for the scheme is expected to begin next month
Ajit Doval, the National Security Advisor, on Tuesday said that the Agnipath recruitment scheme must be viewed from a perspective as opposed to a standalone scheme in the face of the raging protests that have wracked the country since the announcement of the plan.
Speaking to reporters from ANI, the NSA said that the scheme would not be rolled back, despite speculation that it would be withdrawn. Doval went on to say that India needed a leader like Prime Minister Narendra Modi to make India a secure nation, and that no cost was high in order to achieve that goal.
The ex-director of the Intelligence Bureau stated that the scheme was a part of the Modi government’s prime directives to make the country secure. He stated that it was a multiple step process that included making changes across the board to technology and creating future facing policies.
“Broadly speaking, they come under the four heads. It requires equipment, it requires a change in systems and structures, it requires a change in technology, it requires [a] change in manpower and policies, which have to be futuristic,” he added.
On the topic of the ongoing protests in the country, Doval said that while protest was justified, violence, on the other hand, was not. Calling it vandalism, he said that the “violence is not permitted” and that it “will not be tolerated at all.”
Since the announcement of the Agnipath scheme on June 14 this year, several states in the country have seen widespread protests, many of which turned violent. Trains and buses have been burnt. Protestors claim that the scheme lacks job security and post-service benefits.
Agnipath is set to recruit young people between the ages of 17 and a half and 23. Aspirants would serve for four years before being released back into the civilian population, with 25% of them being retained by the Indian army. Currently, 45,000 soldiers are expected to be brought into the service, with registration beginning next month.