Fitness norms in armed forces to be relaxed

New Delhi: The medical fitness norms for entry into the armed forces are soon going to be more flexible.

A comprehensive amendment to the medical fitness criteria for new entrants in the Army, Indian Air force and Navy is on cards to further standardise norms for the aspirants, said Lieutenant General Naresh Kumar, Commandant, Army Hospital Research and Referral.

"We want to standardise our norms so that a lot of aspirants who were earlier considered medically unfit to serve the Indian armed forces can be declared fit now after undergoing correction procedures," Kumar said.

Already people with slight disorders of the eye, arm or knee or with problems in gall bladder, liver and kidney are being allowed to join the armed forces after proper treatment.

Kumar said the changes in medical criteria for new entrants in all the three divisions of the armed forces are being done based on the past findings.

"Aspirants, who have been found to have one or two spots in the liver or little calcification in the kidney, eye problem, gall bladder stone or defects in the foot or arms are also being recruited," Major General Mandeep Singh, ADG, Medical Research, Armed Forces Medical Services, said.

"This is only after they have undergone corrections and their health condition does not come in the way of effectively performing their duties," he said.

Many aspirants with gall bladder stone problem are doing well after undergoing surgery. Those with minor eye problems and who have undergone lasik surgery are observed for an year and then allowed to join the armed forces, Singh said.

"Our aim is that no one with trivial disability should be declared unfit for the armed forces. That is why this time it is a comprehensive observation of all types of ailments and their available medicinal or surgical cure. If treatment can help them perform well, then why stop them. At the end we want the best to be part of us," Major General Mandeep Singh said.

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