Highlights

  • 24-year-old Damira Rakesh allegedly killed in police firing
  • Rakesh was youngest among four siblings
  • He had cleared the physical and medical exams for army recruitment

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Damira Rakesh: the youth killed during Agnipath protests in Secunderabad

Rakesh dreamt of wearing the military uniform and had spent the past 2 years waiting for the written exams

The 24 year-old Rakesh, an Army aspirant who was allegedly killed in police firing during violence at Secunderabad railway station during an anti-Agnipath protest on Friday hailed from Warangal district and was the youngest of four siblings, while his father and brother are into agriculture.

The deceased, an unfortunate first casualty of the ongoing protests against the Centre's new recruitment policy for the Armed forces, hailed from Dabeerpet village in Warangal district of Telangana.

According to Raju, the village Sarpanch, the victim did his schooling in the village and was pursuing graduation.

He is survived by his father, mother, an elder brother and two elder sisters. Rakesh's father and elder brother are farmers, Raju said. A relative of Rakesh is into police service, he added.

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The deceased, aged about 25, has reportedly cleared the requisite tests for selection into Army but a written test was not conducted. This led them to protest today, the sarpanch claimed.

Meanwhile, Telangana Panchayat Raj Minister Errabelli Dayakar Rao and state Sports and Youth Services Minister V Srinivas Goud expressed anguish over the demise of the youth from Warangal district.

Goud demanded that the Centre pay ex gratia to the family of Rakesh, a release said. They found fault with the 'Agnipath' scheme and alleged that the NDA government at the Centre is responsible for the situation arising due to the protests over the scheme.

Violent protests have broken parts of the country demanding the Centre to roll back 'Agnipath' scheme unveiled by the Ministry of Defence which is a pan-India merit-based recruitment scheme for enrolling soldiers, airmen and sailors. Trains were set afire, public and police vehicles attacked and personnel injured as protests over 'Agnipath' snowballed and swept across several states including Uttar Pradesh and Bihar on Thursday.

Under the scheme, young persons will be provided an opportunity to serve in the armed forces as 'Agniveer' for a period of four years, including training period.

Earlier in the day, the Railway Protection Force (RPF) resorted to firing to disperse protesters who went on a rampage at the Secunderabad Railway station where three coaches of a train were set ablaze during the agitation.

Confirming the death, a senior police official told PTI that the firing was done by Railway Protection Force (RPF).

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