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Armed Forces Jobs: Agnipath Scheme a ‘Gross Injustice’ to 2 Lakh Youth, Kharge Writes to President

President urged to do ‘nyay’ to nearly 2 lakh young men and women who had already appeared for recruitment exams and were awaiting joining letters.

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New Delhi: As pre-elections survey after survey flags ‘unemployment’ as the key concern of youth in the country, Congress president has raised the issue of ending recruitment for lakhs of jobs in Armed Forces under the Narendra Modi-led Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) regime.

In a letter to President Drouapdi Murmu, who is also Supreme Commander of the Indian Armed Forces, Kharge said the future of nearly two lakh young men and women has become uncertain due to the ending of the regular recruitment process in the Armed Forces.

He said this was a "gross injustice" done to the country's youths who are seeking regular employment in the Armed Forces due to the Agnipath scheme and urged her to ensure justice for them.

Kharge said he was writing the letter after a meeting with young men and women who had been selected for services with the Indian Armed Forces but were “cruelly denied the opportunity to serve the country”.

“They told me that between 2019 and 2022, almost two lakh young men and women were informed that they had been accepted into the three armed services: the Indian Army, the Indian Navy and the Indian Air Force. These young men and women had struggled against all odds to pass gruelling mental, physical tests and a written exam,” adding that until May 30, 2022, they kept waiting for joining letters, but their “dream were shattered by the Government of India’s decision to end the recruitment process and replace it with the Agnipath scheme.”

He cited various issued with the Agnipath Scheme, and referred to former Army Chief M M Narvane’s statement in his memoir (delayed after ‘review’ by the Army) that the Army was “taken by surprise” by Agnipath, which was like a “bolt from the blue’ for the three defence services.

Appealing to the President to deliver ‘nyay’ or justice to lakhs of youths who spent years in the “pursuit of their dreams’, the Congress president also pointed out that the Rs 250 paid by 50 lakh applicants, amounting to Rs 125 crore, was also not refunded when the recruitment was ended.

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