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Agnipath : Protests in Kozhikode, Thiruvananthapuram

- June 18, 2022

Thiruvananthapuram, June 18 (BPNS)

Several unemployed youths who have been waiting for a job in the army conducted protest marches in Thiruvananthapuram and Kozhikode.

Most of the youths have reached the state capital through whatsapp information and the march which started near the Thiruvananthapuram central railway station with around 500 people increased in size with several youths joining the march. 

Police tried to dissuade the youths from participating in the march and was heard telling them  not to get into criminal cases by marching towards the Kerala Raj Bhavan. 

Amit, a 21 year old youth from Kollam district who had come to Thiruvananthapuram for the march while speaking to BPNS said, “ I have qualified in the physical test and was waiting for the written test. With the Agnipath, I think it is curtains for my dreams and want the government to backtrack from this. I had come from Kollam to participate in the march after being alerted on whatsapp by fellow job aspirants.”

The youths later conducted pushups on the roadside near Rajbhavan, Kerala to demonstrate their solidarity and their interest in joining the uniformed forces. The march at Thiruvananthapuram later culminated near to the Rajbhavan where police blocked the march with barricades.

In North Kerala also protest marches were conducted with a large number of youths participating against the central government’s decision on Agnipath. Scores of youths participated in the protest march against the Agnipath recrutiment scheme of the Government of India. The protest march in North Kerala was held in front of the Kozhikode railway station. 

Ullas Kumar, 21 a youth who is an army aspirant and from Vadakara in Kozhikode district while speaking to BPNS said, “ With Agnipath, the armed forces will turn into a stop gap arrangement for four years for a large majority and this will create insecure feeling among youngsters. An armed force job has always been a dream as a passion and a secure job with all the benefits. The government of India must backtrack from this move that will destroy the hope of the youth as well as the armed forces.”

However, marches in Thiruvananthapuram and Kozhikode were not violent just like in other places with the protestors just sloganeering against the policy and displaying their physical prowess by conducting pushups.