Lawmaker Demands Urgent Meeting on Violent Agnipath Protests

Agnipath recruitment scheme in India: Protesters set a train ablaze at Luckeesarai Junction. Photo: ANI / Mint
Agnipath recruitment scheme in India: Protesters set a train ablaze at Luckeesarai Junction. Photo: ANI / Mint

By RMN News Service

A Congress MP (Member of Parliament) KC Venugopal has demanded an urgent parliamentary meeting to discuss the Modi government’s ill-conceived Agniveer military recruitment scheme which has led to violent protests across the country.

In his letter of today (June 17), Venugopal has asked the chairman of the Standing Committee on Defence, Jual Oram, to convene the meeting so that the violence being perpetrated by the job seekers could be checked.

Reports suggest that the protesters have set on fire at least 12 trains since the protests began on June 15 and now spread in several states of India.

The new scheme for the recruitment of soldiers in the Army, Navy, and Air Force was announced by the service chiefs on June 14 in the presence of defence minister Rajnath Singh. 

The scheme is being promoted by the Narendra Modi government as a major overhaul of the decades-old selection process to improve the youthful profile of the three services.

In order to placate the protesters, the government increased the upper-age limit for recruitment under the “Agnipath” scheme to 23 years from 21 years for the year 2022.

However, the protests continue. Angry protesters are burning trains and attacking public and police vehicles in different states. At least one person died and 15 others were injured in Secunderabad, Telangana, as protests spread to southern India.


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Rakesh Raman