Delhi High Court dismisses petitions challenging the validity of Centre's Agnipath Scheme
The court stated that the scheme was made in national interest and to ensure that the armed forces are better equipped
The Delhi High Court on Monday upheld the Centre's Agnipath scheme for recruitment in the armed forces, saying it was "made in national interest and to ensure that the armed forces are better equipped."
A bench of Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad dismissed a batch of petitions challenging the constitutional validity of the scheme. Stating that the scheme was a policy decision on the basis of national security, the High Court said: “This court finds no reason to interfere with the scheme. All petitions are dismissed.”
The court also dismissed petitions relating to recruitment process for the armed forces under certain previous advertisements while clarifying that such candidates do not have a right to seek recruitment.
“Keeping larger public interest in mind, the petitions are dismissed,” the bench stated. The court had reserved its verdict on the batch of pleas on December 15, 2022.
The Agnipath scheme, unveiled on June 14, 2022, lays out rules for the recruitment of youth in the armed forces.
According to these rules, those between 17-and-a-half and 21 years of age are eligible to apply and they would be inducted for a four-year tenure.
The scheme allows 25 per cent of them to be granted regular service subsequently. After the scheme was unveiled, protests erupted in several states against the scheme, primarily assailing the specified age limit.
Later, the government extended the upper age limit to 23 years for recruitment in 2022.