Captain D. Senthil Kumar stressed the need to establish free coaching centres to train rural students for defence examinations
The contribution of candidates from Tamil Nadu in joining the Indian Navy is less than 1%, with the contribution from the southern districts including Madurai being almost nil. There is a need to establish separate coaching centres to train rural students to crack the competitive defence examinations, says Commanding Officer of 2 (Tamil Nadu) Naval Unit NCC, Captain D. Senthil Kumar.
Speaking to The Hindu, Capt. Senthil Kumar says that recently, the Indian Navy has increased the intake of sailors to 6,500 to 7,000 every year as compared to previous years when only 2,000 sailors were recruited. Despite the increase in intake, the number of candidates joining from Tamil Nadu is less than 1%. “Those who join the Indian Navy from Tamil Nadu are mostly from cities, with almost nil contribution from the rural parts of the Southern districts,” he says.
One of the reasons for the low percentage of students from the southern districts joining the Indian Navy is the lack of awareness about the Navy and the types of roles offered there. “Unlike the Indian Army, Indian Navy personnel work in metro cities. Any student who has completed class 10 or 12 can earn approximately ₹30,000 each month by joining the Indian Navy. Indian Navy personnel have special allowances and can avail of pensions with just 15 years of government service. There are many employment opportunities available post retirement in the government and private sectors for Indian Navy personnel,” he says.
Students who have studied physics, chemistry and maths in class 12 can write the exams that take place twice a year in January and July.
Lack of infrastructure
Capt. Senthil Kumar says that even if rural students are interested in appearing for the examinations, the lack of sufficient infrastructure in preparing the students for the examination, is a major cause for concern. “The examinations are conducted in English and Hindi and hence, many Tamil-medium students find it difficult to clear the examinations. This highlights the importance of setting up training centres for rural students,” he says.
The State government offers free NEET and UPSC coaching for students. Similarly, they can start free coaching centres for defence examinations too, he says. “Private corporates can also come forward in establishing coaching centres for the Indian Navy as part of their Corporate Social Responsibility,” he adds.