Scuffles as India protesters block train lines

STORY: Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government on June 14 set out a policy called 'Agnipath,' or "path of fire," designed to bring more people into the military on four-year contracts to lower the average age of India's 1.38 million-strong armed forces.

The scheme has sparked violent protests in northern and eastern parts of the country, with thousands of young men attacking train coaches, burning tires and clashing with officials, after which the government tweaked some of the rules.

Workers of the youth wing of India's opposition Congress Party climbed on a train at New Delhi's Shivaji Bridge railway station and demanded the government to roll back the recruitment plan as security officials tried to remove them from the tracks.

Protests also erupted in southern Chennai city, where protesters carried banners and flags, before being detained by the police.

"Out of this Indian Army, they are trying to recruit one part for Hindu Sena (a Hindu fringe group). This is bad for the nation, this is actually against the nation," said a protester, Kumar Swamy.

Passengers were forced to wait at railway stations in northern Varanasi and eastern Patna cities for hours, as trains were cancelled and delayed due to the shutdown.

On Sunday (June 19), a top Indian Army official said the recruitment plan would not be rolled back.

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