The National Cadet Corps (NCC), India's tri-services movement to groom school and college students into disciplined citizens, will grow in strength by two lakh and touch the 15-lakh mark soon, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said here on Friday. “I am very happy to inform you that in recognition of the good work done by the National Cadet Corps, the government has sanctioned an enhancement in its authorized cadet strength from 13 lakh to 15 lakh,” Singh said addressing the cadets at the Prime Minister's NCC Rally. The cadets have been in Delhi for the last one month as part of the annual Republic Day camp and had marched as a contingent in the 62nd Republic Day parade down Rajpath on Wednesday. The increase in the strength of the NCC, a voluntary organization, will add five new group headquarters and 40 new units in schools and colleges across the country. The NCC is also planning to raise its current girls cadet strength from the present 24 percent to 33 percent in the next five years and ultimately achieve 50 percent recruitment of girls in its units. Noting that NCC was “a proud symbol” of national integration and values of discipline, patriotic service and team work, the prime minister said he commended the organization for its praiseworthy role in grooming the country's young men and women into disciplined and patriotic leaders of tomorrow. “I have traveled to many countries but rarely have I come across young men and women who are brighter, better informed and more infused with hope, passion and values than in India,” he added. Praising the NCC for showcasing the diversity of Indian society, Singh said the multitude of talent, experience and learning in the organization were a great resource for the country.
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