In a notification, the Ministry of Defence has said that it has a total number of 78,291 positions vacant in the armed forces. The information was given by Minister of State for Defence Shripad Naik in a reply in Rajya Sabha on Monday.
The ministry said that the Indian Army has an authorised strength of 50,312 officers but 42,913 officer positions are occupied, with a shortage of 7,399 officer posts. In the Indian Navy, 10,012 officer positions out of 11,557 are currently occupied with a shortage of 1,545 positions. In the Indian Air Force, the authorised strength is 12,625 officers out of which 483 are vacant as per the latest data.
The notification also said that multiple Personnel Below Officers Rank (PBOR), airmen and sailor positions are vacant in the three armed forces. In the release it said that 12,23,381 positions are authorised for personnel below officer roles in the Indian Army, out of which 11,85,146 are currently occupied with a shortage of 38,235 employees. In the Indian Navy, there are 16,806 personnel below officer roles available as the sanctioned amount is 74,046 positions and 57,240 are currently filled. When it comes to the Indian Air Force, there are 13,823 positions lying vacant wherein 1,42,917 positions are sanctioned and 1,29,094 positions for personnel below officer roles are filled.
The ministry said that the shortage of personnel in the armed forces is a result of retirements, pre-mature retirements and attrition due to casualties and injuries. The ministry also added that the government has taken a number of measures to reduce the shortages.
Some of these measures include sustained image projection, participation in career fairs and exhibitions and publicity campaign to create awareness among the youth on the advantages of taking up a challenging and satisfying career.
It added that additionally various steps have been taken to make career in the armed forces more attractive including improvement in promotion prospects, more attractive pay package, better compensation for risk & hardships, additional family accommodation through Married Accommodation Project (MAP) etc.