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Govt has shown sensitivity: Amit Shah over Centre's decision on upper age limit for recruitment to 'Agnipath'

New Delhi: Highlighting that the recruitment process in the Indian Army was affected due to the COVID-19 pandemic for the last two years, Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Friday thanked the government for approving the 'Agnipath' scheme for the benefit of the youth of the country. "The recruitment process in the Army was affected due to the COVID-19 pandemic for the last two years. Prime Minister Narendra Modi ji, in the 'Agneepath Yojana', cares for youth. The government has shown sensitivity by deciding that this time the age limit for the recruitment of Agniveers should be increased from 21 to 23 years," Shah tweeted today. (roughly translated from Hindi) Shah's tweet further read, "A large number of youths will be benefited by this decision and through Agnipath scheme. They will move forward in the direction of service to the country and their bright future. Thank you PM @narendramodi ji for this." Agnipath Scheme was recently launched by the government in an effort to bring a change in the recruitment process of the Armed Forces. With the new military recruitment scheme facing a backlash by Opposition, the Centre has decided to bring a change in the upper age limit for recruiting Agniveers. Granting a one-time waiver, the Centre on June 16, 2022, announced that the Agniveer upper age limit for recruitments via Agnipath Scheme has been extended to 23 years from 21 years. The Ministry of Defence, in its statement on Tuesday, said that the Agnipath scheme has been designed to enable a youthful profile of the Armed Forces. It will provide an opportunity to the youth who may be keen to don the uniform by attracting young talent from the society who are more in tune with contemporary technological trends and plough back skilled, disciplined and motivated manpower into the society. As for the Armed Forces, it will enhance the youthful profile of the Armed Forces and provide a fresh lease of 'Josh' and 'Jazba' whilst at the same time bringing about a transformational shift towards a more tech-savvy Armed Forces - which is indeed the need of the hour. It is envisaged that the average age profile of the Indian Armed forces would come down by about 4-5 years by the implementation of this scheme. The nation stands to immensely benefit from the infusion of highly inspired youth with a deeper understanding of self-discipline, diligence and focus who would be adequately skilled and will be able to contribute in other sectors. The dividends of short military service to the nation, society and the youth of the nation are immense. This includes the inculcation of patriotism, teamwork, enhancement of physical fitness, ingrained loyalty for the country and availability of trained personnel to boost national security in times of external threats, internal threats and natural disasters. This is a major defence policy reform introduced by the Government to usher in a new era in the Human Resource policy of the three Services. The policy, which comes into immediate effect, will hereafter govern the enrolment for the three services.

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