THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The National Cadet Corps (NCC) is introducing a ‘self-financing’ scheme which will enable educational institutions in the country to open NCC units provided they are ready to meet the operational expenses. The scheme, which has been given the go-ahead by the Centre, will be launched in a month, Lieutenant General A Chakravarthi, Director General, NCC, told ‘Express’ here on Wednesday. Designed to cater to a growing demand, the scheme will allow the NCC to expand at a quicker pace, enlist more schools and colleges, and reduce the financial commitment of state governments to the student force.
“More than 7300 educational institutions across the country are in the waiting list for starting NCC units. The government has approved our proposal and orders will be issued soon,” Chakravarthi, who arrived here on a three-day visit on Tuesday evening, said.
“There will be a uniform framework for starting such units. All the activities, including the investment of resources, will be monitored by us,” he said. NCC being a collaborative effort of the armed forces and state governments, expenses are shared by the two entities. At present, financial nod from the states is a crucial and cumbersome process for starting an NCC unit. State governments pay the salaries and benefits of state employees in the units, provide infrastructure and cover part of the expenses for organising NCC camps. Training of the cadets, on the other hand, is the exclusive domain of the armed forces. The new proposal will help the NCC achieve its target of raising the strength to 14.6 lakh by 2016-17.
“Our authorised strength at Chief Minister Oommen Chandy holding discussions with Director General, NCC, Lieutenant General A Chakravarthi, (centre) in Thiruvananthapuram on Wednesday. Major General B Chakravarty, Additional
Director General, is also seenpresent is 13.8 lakh. We have evolved a five-phase expansion plan which will help us accommodate the educational institutions in the waiting list. Two of the phases are over,” Chakravarthi said.
The NCC, the largest of its kind in the world, is also set to expand its footprints on the international arena. The Centre is studying a proposal for extending NCC’s youth exchange programme to more “friendly” countries, Chakravarthi said.
“We have exchange programmes with 10 countries at the moment - Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Singapore, Maldives, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan and Russia. A few more friendly countries will be included,” he said.