Several prominent business leaders, including N Chandrasekaran, Anand Mahindra, Sajjan Jindal and Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, have come out in support of the Centre’s Agnipath scheme amid rampant protests. They claimed that the physical training, teamwork and leadership roles undertaken by the youth during the four-year military contract will make the young recruits an asset across operations, administration and supply chain management. Several sectors such as hospitality have been hiring retired army personnel for their security and maintenance units for the past many years. Tata Group chairman said: “Agnipath is not just a great opportunity for the youth to serve the nation’s defence forces but it will also make available a very disciplined and trained youth for the industry, including the Tata Group. The Tata Group recognizes the potential of Agniveers and welcomes the opportunity this represents.” Mahindra Group chairman tweeted, “Saddened by the violence around the Agnipath programme. When the scheme was mooted last year, I stated & I repeat the discipline & skills Agniveers gain will make them eminently employable. The Mahindra Group welcomes the opportunity to recruit such trained, capable young people.” In another tweet later, he said, “Large potential for employment of Agniveers in the corporate sector. With leadership, teamwork & physical training, Agniveers provide market-ready professional solutions to industry, covering the full spectrum from operations to administration & supply chain management.”India last week unveiled a military recruitment policy, called Agnipath, or “path of fire”, to bring young people into the defence system on short tenures. This, however, triggered violent protests in several parts of the country, with authorities cancelling a number of train services. The protesters say that the scheme deprives them of a permanent job in the armed forces including guaranteed pension and other allowances. JSW Group chairman said negative elements in society are provoking the country’s youth against the scheme. Instead, this policy, he added, will make the country stronger against any external threat. “Negative elements in society are provoking young individuals by saying that this will militaries our country. What it will do is only make our country stronger to any external threat.” RPG Group chairman also welcomed the move and the opportunity to hire candidates (Agniveers) under the Agnipath policy. “The RPG Group too welcomes the opportunity to employ the Agniveers,” he tweeted. Biocon chairperson also tweeted, “I firmly believe that Agniveers will have a distinct advantage in recruitment in the industrial job market.” Ficci president and HUL MD said that he was delighted with the scheme for multiple reasons. “One is it is not just about the number of people who don the uniform to make it into an effective armed force. We need people who are young, energetic, passionate, trained and fully equipped to service our nation, to serve our nation and to protect our nation. This scheme is in that direction.” He further said, “So this would mean a right blend of youth and experience in the armed forces. This would be a fabulous opportunity for the youth of the country to serve the nation and once they have stepped out as Agniveers, this would become a great talent pool for corporation like ours.” Founder of Info Edge, the parent company of online job portal Naukri.com, said that if a person serves in the armed forces for four years, they will finish as a disciplined and trained professional. They will have a sense of service and commitment in their early to mid-twenties and can adapt and adjust in any career state police forces or central security forces or private sector as well. “And in the private sector I am not merely talking about roles in security it could be in any of several roles such as sales, service, back office, operations anything. And I am not just talking about blue or grey collar jobs.