New Delhi: Army Chief Gen Manoj Pande on Tuesday said that the Agnipath scheme aims to make the Army a future-ready fighting force, capable of meeting multiple challenges, across the full spectrum of conflict.
“The scheme has been prepared following detailed consultations with all stakeholders. This effort complements other ongoing initiatives to transform the Indian Army into a modern, technology driven, Atmanirbhar and battle worthy force,” he said.
The Army Chief was speaking in a press conference along with Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, Air Chief Marshal VR Chaudhary and Navy Chief Admiral R Hari Kumar.
He said that the scheme will necessitate changes in the way Indian Army impart training to the recruits and soldiers, in enhancing their combat potential.
Talking about the benefits of the scheme, the Army Chief said that it will ensure an enhanced youthful profile of the Army by reducing the average age from 32 to 26 years which will be achieved over a period of time.
He said that the scheme will increase in technical threshold of the Army by recruiting Agniveer through ITIs and other Technical Institutes by harnessing their potential.
The Scheme will attract young talents and motivate educated youth with the right skill sets, to join the Army, he added.
He said that the scheme will maintain an optimum balance between youth and experience.
This would present a wider recruitment base by providing equal opportunities to youth from all parts of the country to join the Army, he said.
He said that the Agniveers, leaving after four years, will be empowered with suitable skills and financial means and carry a unique Resume that will significantly enhance their value and employability in the civil society.
“We will institute a fair, transparent and scientific method in screening the initial intake for four years and apply similar yardsticks to select those who will get re-enrolled,” the Army Chief said.
The Army Chief said that the Agniveers will be assimilated and integrated in the Army in every way and will be deployed in units, HQs and other establishments, in operational and non-operational areas, in various wings of the Indian Army i.e. arms and services.
The Army Chief also tried to dispel fears regarding the combat spirits of the soldiers recruited in the Army under the scheme.
He said that he wants to assure that during the implementation and stabilisation of the Agnipath scheme, Army’s operational capabilities and preparedness along the borders and the ability to deal with internal security challenges will be fully maintained.