Indian Army should abolish the Sahayak System now!
The Sahayaks or batmen for officers at police stations are ordinary soldiers working like menservants in the houses of officers in static posts like the army headquarters in Delhi. It is a system started during the British Era and continued still date. The Indian Navy and Indian Air Force have done away with it but the Indian Army is still in continuation with it.
Indian Army is seeking abolition of the Sahayak system in peace stations. It is being said that in field areas, they are still required since there is buddy-pair concept in the infantry. It is seen as demeaning and humiliating to make a soldier do ordinary tasks of a manservant and there have often been criticism to do away it. A recent video by an army man that went viral has revived the debate once again and this time it is expected to bear result.Abolish1. Humiliating
They are army men trained under harsh situation with the hope and enthusiasm of being able to serve the nation one day. But instead they are made to serve the brigades and high officers. They are made to polish shoes, clean homes, clean their dogs and other extremely embarrassing works which are not supposed to be burdened on them. This is simply unjust and it will only be fair to do away with it.2. Lowering morale
The sahayak system not only lowers the morale of the soldiers but also the youngsters who are enthusiastic about joining the Indian Army one day. It is one of the reasons why most youth wouldn’t even think of joining the army. They fear that they will have to serve the high officers instead of serving the nation.3. Navy and air force
It would be best to follow the system that IAF and Indian Navy follows. There are civilians recruited with basic trainings. They have different roles, different uniforms that give them a sense of belonging while separating them from the combatant officers. They are often paid either by the establishment or by the officers, depending on their roles.4. Creating a different position
A new cadre of non-combatant assistants has been proposed and that seems like a better option and a good escape from the cruel sahayak system. The officers will get the required help with routine personal tasks and there will be no complaints of demeaning any soldier.Don’t abolish1. Necessity
An officer has thousands of responsibilities. They are the ones who have to strategize later answer to the government or high authorities if the platoon under them performs poorly. They have the responsibility of maintaining integrity and assigning tasks that doesn’t create bad air amongst the civilians. It is extremely difficult for them to do all that and then take care of everyday chores of cleaning and ironing, staying uptight under all harsh situations. Hence, sahayaks are important.2. Discipline the rude officers
The sahayaks are supposed to help the officer with his uniform and other stuff. These are the necessary works that could save time. However, some officers make sahayaks do unauthorized tasks of their homes which are not supposed to be burdened on them. Simply, strict instructions to the officers to keep sahayaks only for authorized tasks could be the solution instead of abolishing the whole system.
The ministry of Defense is considering the proposed non-combatant officers in place of sahayaks in peace stations and there are no final words yet. Doing away with the age old system is a good change that Army Jawans are looking forward to. We hope that MoD will not disappoint them.