Army short of 8455 officers, other ranks 16597: Jaitley
Defence Minister Arun Jaitley on Tuesday said that the Indian Army is short of 8455 officers as on January 1, 2014, while in other ranks, the shortfall was a nominal 16597 as on April 1, 2014.
In a written reply to Samajwadi Party Rajya Sabha MP Naresh Agrawal, Jaitley said that the government is taking appropriate measures, including making internal adjustments, to mitigate any adverse impact on the functioning of the army.
He said that various measures have been taken on an ongoing basis to reduce shortages in the officers' cadre.
"Vigorous campaigns have been launched to attract the talented youth to join the armed forces. The service conditions of the officers joining through Short Service Commission (SSC) have been made attractive. The tenure of SSC officers has been increased from 10 years to 14 years. The implementation of recommendations of the VI Central Pay Commission with substantial improvement in the pay structure of officers of armed forces has also made the services more attractive," the minister revealed in his written reply.
He also informed members that the army has undertaken sustained image projection campaign to create awareness among the youth on the advantages of taking up a challenging and satisfying career.
"Awareness campaigns, participation in career fairs and exhibitions, advertisements in print and electronic media, motivational lectures in schools, colleges are some of the measures in this direction," Jaitley said.
The minister said that all of the above mentioned measures have resulted in gradual improvement in the last five years with shortage of officers reducing from 26 per cent in 2010 to 17.77 per cent in 2014.
(Posted on 22-07-2014)