New Delhi: A request to set up an expert committee to look into the pros and cons of the Agnipath scheme has been moved in the Supreme Court. A retired Supreme Court judge has been asked form a committee regarding this. In addition, a Special Investigation Team or SIT be set up to investigate the violence that has erupted across the country due to the anti-Agnipath protests. The protests have caused destruction of various public property, including railways. The petition was filed by advocate Vishal Tiwari in a public interest litigation in the apex court.
Protests against Agnipath scheme
The petitioner said that at least 20 coaches were set on fire by the “aggrieved candidates” in New Delhi – Bhagalpur Vikramshila Express and New Delhi-Darbhanga Bihar Sampark Kranti Express. On the other hand, the national highway has been blocked in Bihar. The protests were so strong that the East Central Railway authorities had to cancel 164 trains. Citing newspaper reports, he said that more than 300 trains have been affected across the country, more than 200 prime trains have been cancelled.
Also Read: Amid Anti-Agnipath protests, Home Ministry announces concessions for Agniveers – Top Points
Anti-Agnipath protests turn violent in several parts of country
Apart from Bihar, violence has spread to 13 states of the country, including Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Telangana and Delhi, against the Agneepath project. Protesters set fire to a bus after dropping off passengers in Uttar Pradesh’s Jaunpur. A police car was also set on fire during the protests. The protesters blocked the road at Lalabazar under Shikarra police station area. They blocked the train at Podrona station in Kushinagar after which the Gomtinagar-Chhapra Express was stranded leading to the passengers’ suffering. Six FIRs have been lodged in four districts of Uttar Pradesh in the wake of protests and police have so far arrested 260 people.
One person was killed in police firing at Secunderabad station during the Agneepath protest. The Hyderabad police claimed that the protest was organised at Secunderabad station through a WhatsApp group. The police claim that they have arrested one person who is supposedly the main conspirator behind the protests. Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao has announced a government job to one of the family members of the deceased and a financial assistance of Rs 25 lakh to the family of the deceased in yesterday’s incident.
Ministry of Defence announces more benefits for Agniveers
Amid the anti-Agnipath protests across the country, the Ministry of Defence made a new announcement for ‘Agniveers’. Defence Minister Rajnath Singh was quoted in the tweet as saying that at the end of the four-year term, even if there is no service in the army, the trainee will be able to identify as Agniveer for life. They will get priority in all government jobs. Agniveers will also get loans at a relatively low interest rate if they opt for a livelihood other than a job. Although the duration of training of agniveers is 6 months, the quality of training will not be compromised.