1 killed, several injured as protests against Indian Army’s new recruiting plan intensify

New Delhi, June 17 (KMS): One person has died and dozens have sustained injuries an violent protests against the new military recruitment policy, Agnipath, across India intensify.

One person was killed and 15 were injured in Telangana’s Secunderabad during violent protests against the new recruitment policy of the Indian Army. The protests continued in Talangana, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and other states on the third consecutive day, today. The protests have also been reported in West Bengal and Madhya Pradesh.

Telangana police resorted to aerial firing to disperse the crowd at the Secunderabad railway station as protests escalated into large-scale violence and arson, Indian state-run news agency Press Trust of India (PTI) reported.

Speaking to media, Suman Kumar Sharma, an AC Power Car mechanic, narrated the horrifying scenes while the trains were being vandalised. He said that there were around 5,000 people at the station and around 40 of them entered the train he was in.

East Coast Express, Rajkot Express, and Ajanta Express were set on fire by violent mobs. As many as 71 trains – 65 from Hyderabad Multi-Modal Transport System and six express – have been cancelled so far.

In Bihar, where the protests entered the third day, the house of Deputy Chief Minister Renu Devi was attacked as the new recruitment scheme has set off a firestorm.

Two coaches of the Jammu Tawi Express train were set on fire in Bihar’s Samastipur district, officials said, adding no one was hurt in the incident. A BJP office was also attacked in the Lakhisarai district of Bihar state.

The “Agnipath” or Path of Fire programme, which was unveiled on Tuesday, is aimed at applicants aged between 17.5 and 21. Successful candidates will join the armed services for four years, after which only 25 percent of them will be retained.

Violent protests had erupted in different Indian states on Thursday against the new military recruitment scheme. The Police had to fire shots in the air to disperse the crowds.

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