Volume IconHow have ex-servicemen fared in finding government jobs so far?

The govt has defended Agnipath' saying ex-soldiers will get govt jobs. A Business Standard analysis suggests only 2.4% of ex-servicemen landed a govt job were unable to recruit against reserved quota

Jan Adhikar Party supporters stage a protest against the Agnipath scheme, at Kargil crossing in Patna (Photo: PTI)

Jan Adhikar Party supporters stage a protest against the Agnipath scheme, at Kargil crossing in Patna (Photo: PTI)

Ten percent of vacancies in central government jobs in Group C and 20 per cent in Group D are reserved for ex-servicemen. For public sector banks, central public sector units and CAPFs, the reservation is 14.5 per cent in Group C and 24.5 per cent in Group D.

But, Directorate General Resettlement data shows that states, central public sector units, and Central Armed Police Forces have failed to recruit against the vacancies reserved for ex-servicemen. Only 2.4 per cent of veterans who applied for a job could get one because of that.

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As of June last year, ex-servicemen constituted only 1.15 per cent of the Group C strength and 0.3 per cent of the Group D strength in 94 of the 170 CPSUs. Between 32 central ministries, only 1.60 per cent of the 22,168 positions reserved for veterans have been filled. The Indian Railways could only fill 1.4 percent of the positions reserved for retired armed forces personnel.
A spokesperson for the Indian Railways has said that recruitment for around 24,242 vacancies of ex-servicemen was currently underway. For the ten defence PSUs, where the Centre has announced a 10 per cent reservation for the Agnipath scheme, veterans comprised only 3.45 per cent and 2.71 per cent of Group C and Group D posts, respectively. As of June 2021, only 0.62 percent of positions reserved for veterans have been filled by paramilitary forces, which are made up of the BSF, CRPF, ITBP, SSB, and CISF. Meanwhile, the central government has announced that 10 percent of vacancies in the CAPFs would be reserved for Agniveer.

This graphic should reveal itself category by category, like Central Public Sector Units first, and then in order. It should be matched to the script above in VO3, where CPSUs come first, followed by central ministries and then paramilitary forces, in that order.   

By the end of 2020, Bihar, UP, Punjab and Haryana, which cumulatively account for 80 per cent of the Indian armed forces, had given jobs to only 1.5 percent out of the 200,000 veterans who had registered for a job. Officials of state Sainik Boards say that while most states have reservations under the ex-servicemen quota for all positions, they are reluctant to recognise the graduation certificate issued by the military.

Under the Agnipath Pravesh Yojana, young candidates will be recruited for four-year tenures of service in the military. As many as 46,000 Agniveers are to be recruited this year. From each batch of Agniveer, the government will retain the best. Up to 25 per cent of each year’s intake will be chosen to remain in service.

While the government has announced reservations across sectors for the Agniveers, the hiring trend of ex-servicemen in government sectors does not paint an optimistic picture. The morale of those who secure our borders is just as important as the weapons we arm them with. The government should consider the following question -- if the Agniveer find themselves worrying about an uncertain future, will that bode well for the country?

First Published: Jun 21 2022 | 07:00 AM IST

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