New Delhi, Apr 16 : The Government has scotched rumours of adopting conscription to overcome the shortage of officers in the armed forces.
Defence Minister AK Antony told the Rajya Sabha today that as far as Indian Military Academy (IMA) and National Defence Academy are concerned, both premier armed forces entry institutions were running to their full capacity.
"IMA has a total of 1,683 cadets presently undergoing training against the existing capacity of 1,650 and NDA has also been functioning to its full capacity, except the first batch of 2008," he added.
"So presently there is no such proposal," Antony informed in response to the question whether the government would introduce conscription to overcome critical shortages in officer cadre.
"Several steps have been taken by the three services to attract more talented youths to join the defence forces," he added.
"All officers including those in Short Service Commission (SSC) have been made eligible to hold substantive rank of Captain, Major and Lieutenant Colonels and equivalents after two, six and 13 years of reckonable services respectively," he told the members.
He also said, "The tenure of short service officers had now been extended to 14 years in all the three services. Armed forces were undertaking sustained image projection and publicity campaign to create awareness among the youths about advantages of taking up challenging and satisfying career in the forces."
Such a campaign is being undertaken in schools, colleges, career fairs and through media, he said.