Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann, who was responsible for moving the resolution through the House (Punjab Assembly), stated that he will shortly discuss the contentious programme with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah.
A resolution opposing the Agnipath defence recruitment programme from the Centre was approved by the Punjab Assembly on Thursday, 30 June 2022. The proposal was rejected by Ashwani Sharma and Jangi Lal Mahajan, two BJP lawmakers. Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann introduced the resolution in the House. During the session of the debate on the resolution, Mr Mann stated that he would shortly bring up the subject of the Agnipath scheme with both the Prime Minister of India and the Union Home Minister.
Mann vehemently opposed Agnipath, claiming that this plan was harmful to the nation’s youth. Partap Singh Bajwa, leader of the opposition and a congress legislator, urged the Agnipath program’s cancellation. Manpreet Singh Ayali, an MLA for Akali, backed the resolution and urged that the scheme be scrapped. The resolution advises the state government to raise the issue with the federal government in order to promptly repeal the Agnipath plan.
Mann read the resolution as he stated, “The unilateral announcement of the Agnipath programme by the Government of India has generated broad responses in all states, including Punjab.” The Punjab Vidhan Sabha is adamant that the programme, under which young people would only be hired for four years and only up to 25% will be sustained, is not in the best interests of either national security or young people in this country.
According to Mann, “This strategy is likely to produce unhappiness among the youth who aspire to serve the country’s military services for a lifetime.” The fact that more than 1 lakh soldiers from Punjab serve in the nation’s armed forces and that many of them make the ultimate sacrifice of their lives on the nation’s borders each year must be emphasised, he said. The young people of Punjab are renowned for their bravery and courage, and they view their service in the Indian Armed Forces as a source of pride and honour for the region.
Many Punjabi teenagers who had aspirations of becoming regular troops in the armed forces have had their dreams dashed by this initiative, according to Mann. Mann, who moved the motion, added that the plan had a tendency to erode the Armed Forces’ true sense of community.
After the Center launched the Agnipath programme to enlist young people between the ages of 17 and 21 in the army, air force and navy primarily on a four-year contractual basis, protests broke out in various parts of the nation. Later, it changed this year’s recruitment’s maximum age to 23. According to Mann, the Indian army’s fundamental structure will be destroyed, who stated in the Assembly on Tuesday that his government would introduce a resolution against the Agnipath programme. Earlier, he agreed with the opposition leader Partap Singh Bajwa’s offer to introduce a resolution against the plan.