Highlights | Centre extends age limit for Agnipath scheme from 21 years to 23 for 1st year

Updated on Jun 16, 2022 11:30 PM IST

Agnipath recruitment scheme protest Highlights updates: The 'Agnipath' scheme was announced on Tuesday by defence minister Rajnath Singh and the three service chiefs.

Policemen chasing away a youngster protesting against the Agnipath recruitment scheme in Rewari on June 16, 2022. 
Policemen chasing away a youngster protesting against the Agnipath recruitment scheme in Rewari on June 16, 2022. (HT Photo)
By, New Delhi

Violent protests broke out Thursday in parts of Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Haryana as armed forces aspirants agitated against the government's new 'Agnipath' recruitment scheme for the army, navy and air forces. At least three trains were set on fire in Bihar - in the Chhapra, Gopalganj and Kaimur districts - roads were blocked and tyres burned. 

Also Read| Future of Agniveers not insecure, senior military officials consulted: Govt

In Madhya Pradesh's Gwalior a railway station was ransacked, some trains vandalised and trash cans set on fire. In Haryana's Rewari police lathi-charged protesters gathered outside a bus stand after they disrupted services for an hour. Traffic on the Gurugram-Jaipur highway was disturbed too. 

A crowd gathered in UP's Bulandshahr and Ballia districts too but they dispersed after officials assured them their demands would be conveyed to the concerned authorities. 

Also Read| Agnipath protests spread to MP's Gwalior, railway station ransacked

The 'Agnipath' scheme was announced on Tuesday by defence minister Rajnath Singh and the three service chiefs. Under this scheme armed forces recruits can serve for a four-year-period followed by compulsory retirement for 75 per cent - in most cases without gratuity and pension benefits. 

Also Read| Agnipath scheme: Myths Vs facts

The scheme has been criticised by opposition leaders, including Congress MP Rahul Gandhi and Samajwadi Party leader Akhilesh Yadav, as well as some retired members of the armed forces, who have red-flagged increased numbers of potentially jobless combat-trained youth in civil society.

Follow all the updates here:

  • Jun 16, 2022 11:30 PM IST

    Centre extends age limit for Agnipath scheme from 21 years to 23 for 1st year

    The Centre on Thursday extended the upper age limit for the Agnipath scheme from 21 years to 23 years amid massive protests against the scheme throughout the day. The age waiver will be given only one time for the proposed recruitment cycle for 2022.


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  • Jun 16, 2022 11:11 PM IST

    What will Agniveers do after 4 yrs of service? Govt shares list

    The Centre on Thursday released a list of things that 'Agniveers'- people who will get recruited under the 'Agnipath' scheme- can opt for after they have served in either the Army, the Navy or the Air Force.

  • Jun 16, 2022 09:31 PM IST

    Uttar Pradesh: RLD announces protests in all district HQs against scheme on June 18

    The Rashtrriya Lok Dal (RLD) said on Thursday that protests will be held at all district headquarters in Uttar Pradesh against the Agnipath scheme on June 18 (Saturday). 

  • Jun 16, 2022 09:26 PM IST

    No place for protest of this nature: Ex-IAF chief

    Former Indian Air Force (IAF) chief RKS Bhaduria said on Thursday that there is a lack of understanding of the Agnipath scheme and that there is no place for violence and protest of this nature for youth who are aspiring to join the defence forces. 

  • Jun 16, 2022 09:19 PM IST

    Owaisi slams PM Modi over scheme

    The All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) president Asaduddin Owaisi slammed Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the Agnipath scheme and said it will not solve the issue of unemployment in the country. 

  • Jun 16, 2022 08:52 PM IST

    Peaceful protest against scheme seen in Uttarakhand's Pithoragarh

    Amid violent protests seen across several states against the Centre's Agnipath scheme, people in Uttarakhand's Pithoragarh held a peaceful protest. The protest was held at the at Siltham Chowk but led to a brief traffic jam on Wadda, Munsiyari, Dharchula routes, Pithoragarh SDM Sundar Singh told news agency PTI on Thursday. 

  • Jun 16, 2022 07:42 PM IST

    Himachal Pradesh CM urges protesters to maintain peace

    Himachal Pradesh chief minister Jai Ram Thakur on Thursday urged protesters agitating against the Agnipath scheme to maintain peace and emphasised the need to understand the recruitment initiative before showing outrage. 

    "I urge everyone to maintain peace. Certainly, Narendra Modi, who is the successful Prime Minister of the country, always thinks and does good about the youth. There is a feeling of doing good in their thoughts for you too," Thakur was quoted as saying by news agency ANI. 

  • Jun 16, 2022 07:13 PM IST

    Over 34 trains cancelled due to agitation: Railways

    The railways said on Thursday that more than 34 trains were cancelled and eight more are partially cancelled due to the ongoing protests against the Agnipath scheme. The railways added that 72 trains were also running late due to protests. 

  • Jun 16, 2022 06:12 PM IST

    Some using protesters for political gains: Union minister

    Union minister Ashwini Kumar Choubey on Thursday urged those protesting against the Agnipath scheme to stop their agitation and claimed that some people were using students for their own political gains, a reference to opposition parties that have criticised the scheme. 

    "We assure you that this programme is a constructive step to bring in long-term positive results. Lakhs of youngsters will not only benefit from this but nationalistic sentiments within them will also be strengthened," Choubey said in a statement. 

  • Jun 16, 2022 05:46 PM IST

    Agnipath scheme is controversial, carries multiple risks: P Chidambaram

    Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram said on Thursday that the Centre's Agnipath scheme is controversial, carries multiple risks, subverts the long-standing traditions & ethos of armed forces and there's no guarantee that soldiers recruited under the scheme will be better trained and motivated to defend the country. 

  • Jun 16, 2022 05:12 PM IST

    NIOS to launch special programme for Agniveers to obtain class 12 certificate

    The Union education ministry said on Thursday that the National Institute of Open Schooling (NIOS) is instituting a special programme in consultation with defence authorities to enable Agniveers who have passed class 10, to further their education and obtain a class 12 pass certificate by developing customised courses that are relevant to their area of service. 

  • Jun 16, 2022 04:49 PM IST

    Bihar: BJP MLA's vehicle attacked by protesters in Nawada

    Army aspirants protesting against the Agnipath scheme attacked BJP MLA Aruna Devi's vehicle at Nawada and also torched the party office in the city. In Chapra, BJP MLA C M Gupta's house was also attacked by the protesters. 

  • Jun 16, 2022 04:44 PM IST

    Trains set on fire, roads blocked as 'Agnipath' protests spread across the country

    The protests against the Centre's Agnipath scheme have spread in several states including Bihar, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh and Delhi among others. 

  • Jun 16, 2022 04:17 PM IST

    Bihar deputy CM urges demonstrators to take back protest

    Bihar deputy chief minister Tarkishore Prasad on Thursday urged the armed forces aspirants in the state who are protesting against the Agnipath scheme to take back their protest. 

  • Jun 16, 2022 04:15 PM IST

    Agnipath scheme a good opportunity for Uttarakhand's youth: CM Dhami

    Uttarakhand chief minister Pushkar Singh Dhami said on Thursday that the Agnipath scheme for the short-term recruitment in the armed forces is a good opportunity for the state's youth where serving in the defence is a much sought after profession. 

    Addressing a press conference in Dehradun, Dhami said, “Uttarakhand's association with the armed forces is well known. The history of the country's armed forces is full of the stories of the valour of soldiers from our state which is also called sainyabhoomi,” news agency PTI reported. 

  • Jun 16, 2022 03:55 PM IST

    Agnipath scheme: Left parties up in arms

    Left parties have demanded that the 'Agnipath' scheme be scrapped and taken up in Parliament for discussion, alleging that it does a 'disservice' to India's national interests. "The Polit Bureau of the CPI(M) strongly disapproves the 'Agnipath' scheme that does disservice to India's national interests. Professional armed forces cannot be raised by recruiting 'soldiers on contract' for a period of four years. This scheme, to save pension money, severely compromises the quality and efficiency of our professional armed forces," CPIM general secretary Sitaram Yechury tweeted.

  • Jun 16, 2022 03:47 PM IST

    Watch: Bihar: Army aspirants up in arms against ‘Agnipath’ scheme; Trains burnt, roads blocked

  • Jun 16, 2022 03:43 PM IST

    Rahul Gandhi warns government, 'don't take agnipareeksha of unemployed youth'

    Congress MP Rahul Gandhi urged prime minister Narendra Modi to listen to the voice of the protesters and the country's unemployed youth and not take an 'agnipareeksha' of their patience by making them walk on an 'Agnipath'. On Wednesday, he had warned that this scheme would reduce the operational effectiveness of the armed forces, and stressed that the dignity and valour of India's soldiers must not be compromised.

  • Jun 16, 2022 03:29 PM IST

    Protests against Agnipath scheme break out in Delhi

    In Delhi, according to police, around 15-20 people gathered at Nangloi Railway Station around 9.45 am to protest against a delay in railway recruitment examinations and also against the Agnipath scheme. They stopped a train which was bound for Old Delhi from Jind in Haryana, police said.

  • Jun 16, 2022 03:27 PM IST

    Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal backs protesters

    Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal has backed armed forces aspirants protesting against the 'Agnipath' scheme and has appealed to the government to give these young men and women the chance to serve the country throughout their life and not just four years.

  • Jun 16, 2022 03:27 PM IST

    Trains set on fire in Bihar

    Three trains were set on fire in Bihar - in the Chhapra, Gopalganj and Kaimur districts. Stone-throwing was reported from Ara railway station in the state as more protestors resorted to picketing and road blockades. Protests were also reported from Bhagalpur, Arwal, Buxar, Gaya, Munger, Nawada, Saharsa, Siwan and Aurangabad districts.

  • Jun 16, 2022 03:26 PM IST

    Protests erupt in UP's Bulandshahr, Ballia

    Scores of youngsters gathered in Bulandshahr and Ballia districts to protest against the Agnipath scheme. According to news agency PTI, they gathered in the Khurja locality and the city area of Bulandshahr and raised slogans against the government, demanding the scheme be withdrawn.

    A group of 60 people staged a protest at Kotwari area under Rasra police station limits. They called off the protest late after the administration authorities spoke to them, officials told PTI.

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