10 trade unions to join farmers’ protest against Agnipath

The motorcycles that were burnt by protesters at Secunderabad railway station during the protests against the Agnipath scheme

The motorcycles that were burnt by protesters at Secunderabad railway station during the protests against the Agnipath scheme | Photo Credit: NAGARA GOPAL

The 10 Central Trade Unions (CTUs) in the Opposition camp and several independent sectoral federations and associations decided on Thursday to support the ongoing agitations against the Agnipath scheme. The CTUs will join the protests called by the Samyukt Kisan Morcha on Friday.

The CTUs said they had taken note of the widespread anger and unrest of youth and other sections against the scheme. A joint statement said the scheme was “dubiously designed to degenerate and casualise” the quality of employment in the armed forces through fixed-term contract. The unions said such a step was being taken without any pension or any benefits such as post-retirement medical aid and other social security. “It has dawned on those who had appeared for military selection exams, on those who are looking for stable employment. Such a dubiously designed scheme severely degenerating quality of employment in country’s armed forces will be damaging and disastrous for country’s security and combative preparedness, besides dampening the morale and determination of our soldiers,” the statement added.

The CTUs asked the Centre to consider the warning by retired military commanders that on the one hand Agnipath would weaken the military establishment and, on the other, endanger society at large when Agniveers would be on the streets, unemployed and without pension.

The CTUs maintained that policies of the Centre over the past eight years had put ordinary people in great suffering. "The result is an ever-widening gap between the rich and the poor, unbearable price rise, all-time high unemployment and blatant lawlessness by the government itself using bulldozers against suspects. Agnipath is another step intended to take the nation into an uncertain future, with disastrous consequences. It gives a lie to the oft-repeated claim of the BJP of being ultra-patriotic when they try to do away with pension and social security for those who are to defend the borders of our country and bravely combat, whenever required, putting their lives at stake," they added.

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Printable version | Jun 23, 2022 2:22:00 pm |