Despite the short-term contract for the post of ‘Agniveers’ in the Indian Army, many young women seem to be taking interest in it.
Over 125 girls from Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Telangana and other States have been attending the rigorous training programme of the ‘Indian Army Calling’ organisation here for ‘Agniveer’ selections.
Around 9,200 women are currently in the Indian Army and their number is likely to go up with the special recruitment drive to be held in November in Tamil Nadu and other places.
Meanwhile, the Indian Army Agniveer Recruitment Rally is scheduled from November 27 to 29 at Vellore, Tamil Nadu.
Women who passed Tenth class with a minimum of 45 percent are eligible to become Agniveers. However, many students with intermediate and even degree qualifications are seen taking interest in the enrolment.
A student D. Sravanthi from Nizamabad district in Telangana hopes for a bright future as an Agniveer and says that the experience would fetch her good opportunities in other fields after her service in the Indian Army.
Another student Kandukuri Priyanka of Tirupati said that she would have a chance to continue in the Indian Army as some of the Agniveers would be offered permanent posts.
Indian Army Calling founder-director Basva Venkata Ramana said that more girls would become part of the Indian Army if the norms were relaxed.
“The minimum height has to be 162 cm to get selected although it was only 152 cm in previous Army recruitment rallies. The government should relax the norms since many girls, especially from the Tribal region, are generally shorter and their average height is below 155 cm,” he said.
Mr. Ramana said that girl candidates were given fee exemption at their training centre but were asked to pay mess bill.