New Delhi: Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on Sunday slammed the government over its Agniveer scheme saying the real truth about scheme has emerged as Amritpal Singh didn’t receive military honors or status of ‘martyr’.
Addressing a press conference at the party headquarters AAP Rajya Sabha MP Raghav Chadha said, “Agniveer Amritpal Singh, who was born in Punjab, passed away on October 11, 2023, in the Rajouri sector while on duty at the Line of Control.”
He said that when his mortal remains were brought to his village in Punjab’s Mansa district, the truth of the Agniveer scheme came to the light in front of the country.
“When the BJP government launched the Agniveer Yojana concerning the recruitment of soldiers in the army, many concerns were being raised about this scheme. The AAP also expressed significant concerns about the Agniveer scheme and raised several important questions related to it, but at that time, the BJP-led central government turned a deaf ear, ” Chadha alleged.
He said that when the mortal remains of Amritpal were brought to his village, no unit of the army accompanied them and only a Havildar of the army and two soldiers in civilian attire brought his body in a private ambulance.
“No army vehicle was provided for them. The most shocking part is that no military honors were given to him during the final farewell. Due to the Agniveer Yojana, neither he nor his family will receive any pension, and he will not be granted the status of a soldier who died on duty, ” the AAP leader said.
Slamming the government, Chadha said, “Shame on the central government for not respecting soldiers who died in the line of duty.”
“Is this the real truth of the Agniveer scheme?” Chadha asked.
He said that Arvind Kejriwal’s AAP cannot tolerate any disrespect to the soldiers and is always standing for the honor of soldiers and their families.
“The AAP’s Punjab government has decided to provide a Rs 1 crore honorarium amount to the family of Agniveer Amritpal. The Punjab government will stand shoulder to shoulder with the bereaving family, ” he said.
Blasting the BJP government at the Centre, Chadha said that when the BJP-led Central government did not provide any military honors or a final farewell to Agniveer Amritpal, the police of Mansa district in Punjab gave him the state honors during his last rites.
“This incident raises a significant question mark on the policies of the BJP government at the center. This country stands tall because of its soldiers, not because of the leaders. The sooner the BJP government understands this, the better it is for the country. Since the beginning, we have said that the Agniveer Yojana is a dangerous experiment with the country’s army, ” he said.
The AAP leader said that it will have an impact somewhere on the strength of the army and the morale of the soldiers.
“Don’t implement this scheme, but the BJP government won’t even listen to a word of criticism. An example of this has been seen today in the case of fallen soldier Amritpal. This scheme has been introduced in a rush, and it has proven nearly all the concerns about it to be true, ” he added.