Centre introduces multiple measures to back 'Agniveers' after 4-year service in forces

Centre introduces multiple measures to back 'Agniveers' after 4-year service in forces

For the first batch of Agniveers, the age relaxation will be of five years.

The Narendra Modi government has announced several measures to support the 'Agniveers' after their four-year service in the armed forces under the Agnipath scheme. From reserving 10 per cent in paramilitary forces, coast guard and defence PSUs to financial assistance, the central government has left no stone unturned to allay the concerns of the youths' future after their four-year stint in the uniform ends.

1. Defence minister Rajnath Singh announced a ten per cent reservation in the posts of Coast Guard and 16 defence public sector undertakings (DPSU). The defence minister said that the necessary amendments to the rules will be undertaken to implement the provisions. The minister added that the DPSUs will be advised to make similar amendments to their recruitment rules

2. The Ministry of Home Affairs has reserved ten per cent of the vacancies in the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) and the Assam Rifles for the 'Agniveers'. The MHA further announced that it would give three years of age relaxation to them beyond the prescribed age limit. For the first batch of Agniveers, the age relaxation will be of five years.

Centre introduces multiple measures to back 'Agniveers' after 4-year service in forces
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3. The Centre has already announced its decision to increase the upper age limit for the recruitment of Agniveers from 21 to 23 years. The government said that the decision was taken in view of the fact that recruitment was not possible for the last two years.

4. The Directorate General of Shipping under the ministry of ports and shipping along with the Indian Navy announced an induction of Agniveers into the Merchant Navy. The shipping ministry announced six service avenues for the transition of Agniveers in various roles of the Merchant Navy following the four-year service. These measures for Agniveers include transition from Ratings in Indian Navy to Certified Ratings in Merchant Navy, transition from Electrical Ratings in Indian Navy to Certified Electro Technical Ratings in Merchant Navy, transition from Ratings in Indian Navy to Certified Class IV-NCV CoC holder in Merchant Navy, transition from Electrical Ratings in Indian Navy to Certified Electro Technical Officers in Merchant Navy and transition from Cook in Indian Navy to Certified Cook Merchant Navy.

5. The Department of School Education and Literacy through its autonomous institution NIOS announced that it will institute a special programme in consultation with the defence authorities to enable those Agniveers who are 10th class pass to continue their education and obtain a 12th class pass Certificate by developing customized courses that are not only current but very relevant to their area of service. This certificate is recognised for both employment and higher education purposes in the whole country.

6. The education ministry has decided to launch a special, three-year skill-based bachelor degree programme for serving defence personnel that will recognise the skill training imparted to them during their tenure in the defence establishments. "Under this programme that has been designed by IGNOU and will also be executed by them, 50 % of the credits required for a graduate degree will come from the skill training - both technical and non-technical - received by the Agniveer, and the remaining 50 % will come from a basket of courses," the government said.

7. The Skill India and Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship has decided to work together to train the students in additional skills to make them better suited for civilian jobs. "Agniveers will get Skill India certification while in service, which will enable them to pursue many diverse opportunities in entrepreneurship and job roles that are being created in our economy after completion of their tenure," the government said.

8. To identify ways in which the banks and financial institutions can support Agniveers, the secreatary of the department of financial services (DFS) held a meeting with Chief Executives of Public Sector Banks (PSBs), Public Sector Insurance Companies (PSICs)and Financial Institutions (FIs). In the meeting it was decided that these institutions would explore employment opportunities for Agniveers in suitable capacities based on their educational qualifications and skills through suitable benefits/relaxations, etc.

9. Several state governments including Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Uttarakhand etc have announced that Agniveers, after serving the armed forces for four years, will be given preference in filling of vacancies in state police forces.

10. Several corporate houses and industry bodies have welcomed the new and transformative recruitment process for the armed forces. The well trained, disciplined and technologically savvy youth who finish their service to the armed forces will be valuable asset to their organisations.

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