Even as soldiers posted at inhospitable terrains defend the nation’s frontiers, it appears that aspirants seeking a career in the defence forces are given a dose of the conditions to come even before they don the uniform. The shocking news of hundreds of young men taking the exam only in underwear at a recruitment centre in Bihar speaks of the insensitiveness of the officials towards the candidates. Although sources at the Army Regional Office were quick to defend the decision to have the examinees writing the exams in such a manner, to prevent cheating, but was such a procedure warranted? This will only break the spirit of aspirants. This ‘administrative lapse’ should be rectified.