Rahul Gandhi says, will cancel Agnipath scheme

Rahul Gandhi pointed out, in the past defence manufacturing in the country was done by the PSU and now Modi had handed over it to Adani

By Newsmeter Network  Published on  5 May 2024 4:49 AM GMT
Rahul Gandhi says, will cancel Agnipath scheme

New Delhi: Senior Congress leader Rahul Gandhi today reiterated that the INDIA government will scrap the Agnipath scheme of recruitments in defence services and will revert back to the earlier system.

He also announced that the INDIA government will definitely pay some sort of compensation to those 1.5 lakh youth who had been selected for defence services prior to the launch of the Agnipath scheme but were later not allowed to join.

Gandhi was interacting here today with the youth drawn from across the country, several of whom included those who were not allowed to join the services even after having been through the final selection in the defence forces.

The former Congress president disclosed that the Agnipath scheme was not the idea of the defence services but that of the PMO. He alleged, like during the demonetisation, the entire established system was bypassed, in a similar way the whole system was bypassed by the PMO and the National Security Adviser.

He alleged that the Agnipath scheme which will deny the majority of the soldiers the benefits like pension and canteen facilities, has been introduced to divert soldiers’ money to Adani who has joined the defence manufacturing. He pointed out, in the past defence manufacturing in the country was done by the Public Sector Undertakings and now Modi had handed over it to Adani.

Reiterating his party’s resolve to carry out caste census followed by the economic survey, Gandhi while replying to questions from the participants, said it was important to find out the level of participation of people in the decision making process and also find out who controlled how much wealth in the country.

He said, right now, the Dalits, the Backwards and the Adivasis who constitute about 73 percent of the country’s population had no representation in media or corporate India. He said their voice was not being raised anywhere as the media was under the control of a select few people who constituted not more than five percent of the population.

Gandhi alleged that reservations and job avenues were gradually being phased out. Quoting the example of Agnipath scheme under which soldiers will be recruited for just five years and without any benefits like pension or canteen, he said, they can’t even get proper training.

He warned that the Agnipath scheme will weaken the morale of the army as it will create two types of soldiers, one who will be entitled to pension and other benefits, while the others, the Agniveers, will not be entitled to anything.

Underlining the need for caste census in the country, Gandhi said, it will lead to proper and due representation to each caste, based on its population. He pointed out, otherwise their voice will not get heard and they will be damned as terrorists as was done to them and farmers also.

Gandhi took questions from the youth who had come from different states. They mostly raised questions and concerns about their future. Some of these were those who had been selected for the defence services but were not allowed to join after the introduction of the Agnipath scheme.

Some of these youth had spent some time in jail as they were imprisoned for protesting against the Agnipath scheme.

Gandhi told them that the INDIA government has already planned to bring Right to Apprenticeship, which will entitle them to first guaranteed job after graduation or diploma with an assured income of Rs one lakh for the first year.

Inputs from PTI

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