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Army’s Proposal of 3 year Tenure for Civilians

  • 14 May 2020
  • 3 min read

Why in News

Recently, the Army has proposed 3 years of voluntary Tour of Duty (ToD) for civilians on a trial basis.

Key Points

  • Proposal:
    • The Army plans to take civilians on a three- year ‘Tour of Duty’ (ToD) or ‘Three-year Short Service’ on a trial basis to serve in the force as both officers and Other Ranks (ORs).
    • The proposal suggests several measures to incentivise this scheme like a tax-free income for three years and a token lump sum at the end of three years of about Rs.5-6 lakh for officers and Rs.2-3 lakh for ORs.
    • However, there will be no severance packages, resettlement courses, professional encashment training leave, ex-Servicemen status, ex-Servicemen Contributory Health Scheme (ECHS) for the ToD officers and other ranks.
    • The proposal is a shift from the concept of permanent service/job in the Armed Forces, towards internship/temporary experience for three years.
    • If approved it will be a voluntary engagement and there will be no dilution in selection criteria.
    • The Army hopes that this would attract individuals from the best colleges, including the Indian Institute of Technology.
  • Rationale behind the Proposal:
    • There is a "resurgence of nationalism and patriotism" in the country and the proposal attempts to tap the feeling of the youths who do not want to join the Army as a profession but wish to experience military life for a temporary duration.
  • Expected Benefits to the Army:
    • Reduction of Financial Burden: The cost of a three-year service per officer will be a fraction of the cost incurred on Short Service Commission (SSC) officers,which includes cost of pre-commission training, pay, allowances, gratuity, leave encashment among others.
    • Modernisation of Army: The reduced financial burden will shift the focus towards modernisation of the army in terms of training,arms and equipment.
  • Expected Benefits to the Youth:
    • It will not only provide a job with higher salary but also ensures a placement in corporate sectors after retirement as the corporate sector will prefer to hire such youths rather than fresh graduates.
    • It has been seen that corporates favour individuals who have been trained by the military at 26 or 27 years of age.
  • Benefits to the Nation:
    • It will help to channelise the youth energy into positive utilisation of their potential.
    • Rigorous military training and habits inculcation will lead to healthy citizenry.
    • The entire nation will benefit from trained, disciplined, confident, diligent and committed young men or women who have done the three-year service.


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