'Oppn creating controversy over Agnipath scheme'

Union minister and former Army chief General V K Singh (retd) on Friday accused the opposition parties of creating a controversy over the Centre’s Agnipath scheme for short-term recruitment in the defence forces by “provoking” people. Since the Opposition has nothing else to do, it is stoking a controversy over the scheme even before its implementation has started, he alleged.

Speaking to reporters at the Nagpur airport over the violent protests and opposition to the new recruitment scheme, he said, “There is no controversy in the scheme, but a controversy is being created by the opposition, which has nothing else to do. They are being surrounded by the ED…”

“People are being told wrong things and being provoked. Where is the controversy when the scheme is yet to get started?” he added.

The minister said the Army has never been a large-scale provider of jobs.

“People get jobs in Army and other forces after fulfilling certain conditions, wherein a lot of things have to be done. If they (Agniveers) perform well, then 25 per cent of them will be retained in the service. Besides, the remaining will get a good financial package. States like Haryana, Uttar Pradesh as well as the Home ministry have assured to give priority in the forces,” he said.

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William Murphy

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