A week almost since the Agnipath Scheme was announced and the country stands divided. The youth, to whom it caters, does not. The government which must act in favour of the majority, does. Even as brickbats are exchanged between the ruling BJP and the Opposition led by the Congress, protests and vandalism as a means to reject the scheme have been young India’s response to the new Army recruitment plan.
As youth question the looming “what after four years?” several corporates have stepped in over Sunday-Monday. These groups are offering prospective Agniveers the scope of future employment with their many companies all over India.
As JSW Group’s Sajjan Jindal put it: “There is no better training for the youth than the Indian Army. We will be happy to absorb the Agniveers.”
The youth, however, ask in what role? To which the Congress replies: “As future security guards in BJP’s corporate allies’ offices,” answer Opposition members from SP’s Akhilesh Yadav to BSP’s Mayawati. In fact, even senior BJP leader Kailash Vijayvargiya stated: “Agniveers will be given priority while allocating the work of guarding the BJP party office.”
Watch Congress leader P. Chidambaram’s tweet here:
On Monday, Anand Mahindra, the chairman of Mahindra and Mahindra Group, became the first business leader to offer a job to Agniveers after they are demobilized. The new Agnipath scheme has sparked off protests across the country as it plans to demobilize 75% of recruited troops without a pension.
Watch Tweet here:
Within a few hours of Mahindra’s announcement, the chairman of RPG Enterprises Harsh Goenka too expressed his intent to bring them into the fold of his tyres-to-energy conglomerate.
Watch Tweet here:
“The RPG group also welcomes the opportunity to employ the Agniveers. I do hope other corporates will also join us to take this pledge and assure our youths of a future,” Goenka said.
Even before Goenka backed Mahindra, a debate had been taking place over the latter’s tweet. Not everyone was happy with his statement, just as they were with various state governments announcing that Agniveers will be given preference for government and police jobs.
A Twitter user had asked Anand, “What post will be given by the Mahindra group to #aganiveer?”
Another user posted:
Mahindra who is known to be an active social media blogger, responded saying, “Large potential for employment of Agniveers in the corporate sector. With leadership, teamwork and physical training, Agniveers provide market-ready professional solutions to industry, covering the full spectrum from operations to administration and supply chain management.”
He however did not mention the specific jobs that would be offered to them. Users are assuming that he would announce the job roles too very soon.
Kiran Mazumdar Shaw of Biocon has also offered job prospects to the 75 percent demobilised Agniveers.