india

‘Military is no place for hooligans and arsonists’

‘Individuals who have participated in violence and arson should be identified and not be recruited.’

“Once a decision has been taken after two years of deliberation by those who are in charge, it is now up to the military to implement it in the best possible manner.

“The government on its part needs to look at concrete employment opportunities for the Agniveers after four years.

“This issue should not be politicised because that will gravely harm the armed forces and the country,” Lieutenant General K Himalay Singh (retd), former general officer commanding, 16 Corps, tells Rediff.com‘s Archana Masih.

‘This violence should be condemned and is totally unacceptable to the military and the nation.

Those who participated should be identified and not be recruited. There is no place for this hooliganism in the military at all.

If arsonists are recruited, they will be a threat to the security of the nation. Such individuals should be identified and ruthless removed from the recruitment process.

There seems to be an attempt to politicise the issue. This will gravely harm the armed forces and the country.

Though I have some operational concerns about the scheme, it has many benefits for the country as well. This is an opportunity for long term military transformation in keeping with the times.

I have spoken about some operational concerns about the impact of the Agnipath scheme on military operational preparedness, but that will be addressed by the military alone.

Once a decision has been taken after two years of deliberation by those who are in charge, it is now up to the military to implement it in the best possible manner.

It is for the military to inculcate the spirit of camaraderie, integration, unity and ethos of the unit in the Agniveers through rigorous implement physical and mental training in those initial four years.

Secondly, the government needs to look at concrete employment opportunities for the Agniveers after four years. This uncertainty about what they will do after four years is the main reason behind the agitation.

Some chief ministers have said they will give priority to them in government jobs, but they need to spell out these employment plans with a little more clarity.

Thirdly, this issue should not be politicised. Members of different political parties have given subtle hints or messages which are harmful at this point of time. There are parties that are trying to take political advantage of the issue which is dangerous. Political parties must exercise self restrain when it comes to such a sensitive issue.

Fourthly, the message needs to be sent to the young boys aspiring to join the army that by age 22 when others are still starting out, they would have completed four years of army life and have over 12 lakh rupees which can help him in the career and life ahead. Awareness about the benefits needs to be sent out on social media.

Feature Presentation: Aslam Hunani/Rediff.com

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