Agnipath Scheme

Agnipath Scheme

Agnipath Scheme


  • Under the Agnipath Scheme, the youth joining the army will be called Agniveer. Youth will be able to be recruited into the army for a short duration.
  • Under the new scheme, around 45,000 to 50,000 soldiers will be recruited annually, and most will leave the service in just four years.
  • However, after four years, only 25% of the batch will be recruited back into their respective services, for 15 years.
  • Pension– Agniveers will not be eligible for any pensionary or gratuity benefits under the scheme.

Eligibility Criteria

  • It is only for personnel below officer ranks (those who do not join the forces as commissioned officers).
  • Commissioned officers are the army’s highest-ranked officers.
  • Commissioned officers hold an exclusive rank in the Indian armed forces. They often hold a commission under the president’s sovereign power and are officially instructed to protect the country.
  • Aspirants between the ages of 17.5 years and 23 years will be eligible to apply.


  • It aims at providing a job opportunity to the patriotic and motivated youth.
  • It is expected to bring down the average age profile of the Indian Armed Forces by about 4 to 5 years.
  • The scheme envisions that, the average age in the forces is 32 years today, which will go down to 26 in six to seven years.

Benefits for Agniveers

  • Upon the completion of the 4-years of service, a one-time ‘Seva Nidhi’ package of Rs 11.71 lakhs will be paid to the Agniveers that will include their accrued interest thereon.
  • They will also get a Rs 48 lakh life insurance cover for the four years.
  • In case of death, the payout will be over Rs 1 crore, including pay for the unserved tenure.
  • The government will help rehabilitate soldiers who leave the services after four years. They will be provided with skill certificates and bridge courses.

Criticism of the Agnipath Scheme:

  • Slashing the expenditure– The reform is criticized for its move to slash the growing salary and pension bills of the three services.
  • Diluting the professionalism– The scheme has been accused of diluting the professionalism of the armed forces.
  • Reduced efficiency– The process will result in mixed units that will lack cohesion and regimentation, which will reduce their effectiveness.
  • Against induction of women– There is also a criticism that with the induction of women in all trades, a unit’s fighting efficiency and rigor will be reduced.
  • Political militias– There is an apprehension that the youthful population with military training could create political militias if they cannot find suitable employment avenues.
  • Lack of reservation– Reservation for former Agniveers in jobs in both central government and state governments is lacking.
  • Suspension of recruitment– Already the recruitment process was suspended for the last two years due to COVID.

Related Links:

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