15 Dec 2022 11:08 AM GMT
The Delhi High Court on Thursday reserved judgment on a batch of pleas challenging Central Government's Agnipath Scheme, and seeking resumption and enrolment as per previous recruitment scheme in defence services.Additional Solicitor General Aishwarya Bhati appearing for the Centre told a division bench of Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad that the scheme...
The Delhi High Court on Thursday reserved judgment on a batch of pleas challenging Central Government's Agnipath Scheme, and seeking resumption and enrolment as per previous recruitment scheme in defence services.
Additional Solicitor General Aishwarya Bhati appearing for the Centre told a division bench of Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad that the scheme is making a "paradigm shift" in recruitment of the armed forces.
"It is not a scheme that is only making a qualitative difference or a quantitative difference. This is a scheme that is making a paradigm shift in the way the armed forces of the country will recruit," Bhati told court.
She added: "…we want to bring a complete paradigm shift and this is one of the biggest changes in policy…defence recruitment…that the country is seeing. We have evolved over the years. We started off as a British Army but now after independence, the manner in which we have evolved…"
Bhati further said that the government has taken a policy decision in introducing the scheme which has been carried out uniformly across the services in question.
"We were trying our best to go ahead with recruitment in whatever manner we could….the decision that is taken at the highest levels of the government ... Something that has come out of this study, it is on the horizon, the modalities are being worked out and it is clear that this scheme is going to be a paradigm shift," Bhati submitted.
Besides hearing the main challenge to the scheme, the court also heard other petitioners who are seeking enrolment as per the previous recruitment scheme.
Yesterday, Bhati had told court that the decision to introduce the scheme was not taken lightly and that a lot of study has gone into the policy. She also submitted that the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship is presently working on skill-mapping of the Agniveers.
Earlier, Centre in its affidavit had submitted that the objective of the scheme is to have a young combat force which is physically and mentally capable of taking the new challenges anticipated by experts.
Based on detailed deliberations over an extended period of time with all stakeholders, the Centre has said, a model comprising a well experienced permanent cadre with niche operational and technical skills "supported by a youthful and a well-equipped support cadre comprising dynamic rank and file" was envisaged.
On the aspect of four years duration of Agniveer recruits service, the Centre had said that the said duration of training has been optimised to meet the organisational requirement.
The government also said that adequate incentive has been provided to existing personnel to fulfil their aspirations outside the Armed Forces as part of the society.
Explaining the Agnipath scheme, it was submitted that all recruitment into Armed Forces will be conducted only through Agnipath Scheme, utilising contemporary technology, practices and systems to select the most capable youth for a period of four years.