Educational Empowerment of the Indian Armed Forces: A Case Study of IGNOU
Soldiers join the Armed Forces soon after completing their
schooling, knowing fully well that they will retire pre-maturely between
the age of 35 to 45 years, when they are at the peak of their social
and personal responsibilities, with no assurance of a second career.
At the time of their retirement these personnel are well groomed,
disciplined, trained, and dedicated.
The Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) has developed
a Scheme to facilitate the educational upliftment and career
advancement of the personnel of the Armed Forces, by recognizing
their in-service training/courses undergone by them at their own Training
Institutes/Schools/Establishments, and allowing them vertical mobility
into the final year of the Bachelor’s degree programme. Since majority
of the Defence personnel superannuate in their mid- lives, a Bachelor’s
degree should facilitate them in their second innings, to begin a new
The purpose of this study was to find out how the IGNOU degrees
provided career opportunities, enhanced the social status and improved
the academic competencies of the defence personnel. There is a felt
need to undertake such a study in order to find out the benefits
derived by the defence personnel by obtaining civil degrees from
IGNOU, and how it has impacted their lives pre and post- retirement.