D.O.No.AIRF/24(C) Dated: October 1, 2013

Resp. Shri Mallikarjun Kharge Ji,

Sub: Settlement of long-pending genuine demands of the Railwaymen

I, on behalf of All India Railwaymen’s Federation, which was established in the year 1924(during British era), having current membership above one million, being the oldest, largest and militant organization of the Railwaymen in our country and has a series of struggles and achievements at its credit, take this opportunity to convey our hearty gratitude and thanks to your good-self for taking positive steps for getting resolved some long pending demands of the Railwaymen, viz. Constitution of VII Central Pay Commission, Permission to Privilege Pass holder Railway employees to travel in Duronto Express Trains, merger of Sr. PWS with JE(PWS), Cadre Restructuring, upgradation of apex level Group `C’ posts to Group `B’ posts, benefit of promotional pay fixation as per Rule 13(i) of RS(RP) Rules, 2008 w.e.f. 1.1.2006.

At the same time, I humbly request your good-self for taking similar positive action to address the following important issues, keeping in view the fact that the Railwaymen of the Indian Railways are making their sincere all out efforts for running the Railways round the clock in all the seasons, weather conditions, despite all odds.

1. Scraping of New Pension Scheme and restoration of Old Pension Scheme – The paramilitary forces were brought back under the Old Pension Scheme in the year 2009 after strong protests by the forces. Time and again, the Railwaymen have been appreciated/praised for their yeomen services rendered to the Nation and termed as second line of defence for our country by the people at highest echelons in the Railways, therefore, there is ample justification that the Railway employees should be brought back under the purview of Old Pension Scheme.

2. Grievances of the Running Staff – There may be no difference of the opinion in the fact that the Running Staff, both Loco & Traffic, are engaged in keeping the wheels of the Indian Railways moving round the clock in odd weather conditions throughout the year. It is a matter of serious concern that these important categories of the Railwaymen were not given a fair-deal by the VI CPC, consequent to this, their genuine grievances, viz. allotment of higher pay scale, payment of arrears of Running Allowance w.e.f. 1.1.2006, improvement in ALK, 25% enhancement in their mileage, allotment of GP Rs.4600, reduction in duty hours, provision of Additional Allowance to Running Staff working on goods trains, improvement in the conditions of the Running Rooms, etc. etc., are still pending for quite some time, which is causing serious resentment among this vulnerable category of staff.

Since this matter directly relates to safe, efficient and punctual train operations, I would again seek your personal intervention in the matter so that aforementioned mentioned long pending genuine demands of the Running Staff are resolved without further delay.

3. Merger of Technician-II(GP Rs.2400) with Technician-I(GP Rs.2800) – It was decided bilaterally by the Railway Board with the AIRF, that the Technician-II (GP Rs.2400) would be merged with Technician-I (GP Rs.2800). This issue is regularly pursued by the AIRF, up to apex level, however, it is a matter of serious concern that the final outcome is still awaiting. On account of inordinate delay in issuing orders by the Railway Board on the above subject matter, there is serious discontentment among the Technicians who are fully involved in upkeep and proper maintenance of all kinds of rolling stock, signalling gears, tracks and other machines and plants in the Railways, involving latest and modern technology. It would, therefore, be highly appreciated, if orders for merger of Technician II with Technician I are issued without further loss of time, so that the Technicians can get some relief.

4. Provision of GP of Rs.4800 in place of Rs.4600 to all Senior Supervisors – It is unfortunate that, in spite of the agreement and unanimous recommendations of the Railway Ministry, Supervisors of the apex grade are still deprived of the Grade Pay of Rs.4800, causing lots of frustration in the middle management cadre. The promise to give them Group `B’ status since years together has also not been fulfilled. We hope, you will kindly intervene in the matter to save the senior Subordinates from frustration.

5. Sanction additional posts in commensurate with increase in the number of trains and workload – Increased workload on the Railwaymen, as a result of creation of additional assets and introduction of new trains, creates lots of burden on the existing staff. Therefore, there is urgent need to sanction additional posts without matching surrender.

6. Stop outsourcing of perennial nature jobs, violating the provision of Contract Labour (Regulation & Abolition) Act, 1970 – As you are aware that, according to provision of Contract Labour (Regulation & Abolition) Act, 1970, perennial nature jobs should not be outsourced/contracted out. But, it is very unfortunate that this is being done in the Indian Railways, which is supposed to be a modern employer. AIRF demands that such outsourcing should be stopped immediately.

7. Remove all the anomalies of the 6th CPC as agreed upon in the meeting of Departmental Anomaly Committee and resolve all the anomalies pending before National Anomaly Committee – On the anomalies of VI CPC, a unanimous agreement was arrived at between the recognized federations and the Railway Board, but it is unfortunate that all the issues are still lying unresolved on the pretext of Ministry of Finance observation. On the other hand, similar anomalies have been addressed by the other ministries, and Ministry of Finance has not taken any cognizance. I hope, you will kindly intervene in the matter and necessary instructions will be issued so that the anomalies can be resolved.

8. Parity of grade pay to Stenographers between the field staff and the staff working in Secretariat

Stenographer is a vulnerable cadre, and VI CPC had also recommended for maintaining their parity with the staff working in the Ministry and other field staff. But unfortunately, up till now this has not been implemented. It is, therefore, requested that parity should be maintained in the case of Stenographers working in the field as well as Zonal Railways and Production Units.

9. Reckoning of 100% Casual Labour Service rendered as Qualifying Service for seniority and pensionary benefits is still pending in spite of Hon’ble Supreme Court judgment – Though Ministry of Railways had recommended for reckoning of 100% service put in by the casual labour, it is unfortunate that this is not being implemented on this or the other pretext. AIRF, therefore, demands that the entire casual service period rendered by the casual labour should be counted for the purpose of seniority, MACP and other pensionary benefits.

10. Stepping up of pay of seniors who are drawing less pay than the juniors consequent on fixation of pay due to implementation of VI CPC recommendations between the direct recruits and promotees

Stepping up of pay of senior employee on par with junior employee consequent on modification of ACP Scheme as MACP is pending with the Railway Board – Though this is an issue which needs to be dealt with at DoP&T level, being the issue of National Anomaly Committee, we need the help of Ministry of Railways for pursuing the matter at appropriate level for giving stepping-up benefit to the seniors, drawing less pay than their juniors as well as promotees should not get lesser recruitment grade.

11. As per decision taken in the DC/JCM Meeting, 5% of the sanctioned strength of the Section Officers in the pre-revised scale of Rs.6500-10500 was earmarked to non-qualifying Appendix III Accounts Assistants. Consequent upon implementation of VI CPC recommendations, the same was revised to 1% of the combined strength of SOs & SO(A)s , reducing the percentage. The demand of increasing the same to 5% on the combined strength of SOs and SSO(A)s is still pending with the Railway Board.

12. Abolition of Grade Pay Rs.2000 for the purpose of MACPS – Earlier, ACP was given in the hierarchical pay, but this time, in the MACP Scheme, Sr. Clerk, Technician, Sr. Booking Clerk, Trains Clerk etc. have been allotted Grade Pay of Rs.2000, which is not available in their hierarchical grade pay. Recently, a decision has also been given by the Hon’ble Court to give MACP according to hierarchy, but unfortunately, that has also not been implemented. It is requested that the Grade Pay of Rs.2000, which is anomalous, should not be introduced in the cadre where it is not available and they should be given the benefit of MACP according to hierarchical grade pay.

13. LARSGESS – We are very much thankful for implementation of LARSGESS. This has created a win-win situation for the Ministry of Railways and the Railwaymen and given lot of motivation to them for increasing productivity and efficiency. Though dispensation of PET and Written Test has given the Railwaymen lot of moral boost, but it is unfortunate that some of the candidates those who failed in 2010 Cycle are hit hardly because at that time this dispensation was not available. It is our humble request that all the candidates those who were failed in 2010 Cycle should be given one chance to get resolved their miseries. It is further requested that this scheme should be extended in other higher grade pay also.

14. The demand of recruitment of wards of Railwaymen as Substitutes has not been implemented by the GMs of the Zonal Railways due to several restrictions imposed in the orders of the Railway Board
Though the orders for the recruitment of Substitutes, to the tune of 10% in Safety Categories and 2% in Non-Safety Categories, have been issued to the General Managers of the Zonal Railways and Production Units, but unfortunately the same have not been implemented. With the result, vacancies used to create lot of pressure on the existing workers. It is, therefore, requested that orders, already issued by the Railway Board, should be get implemented over the Indian Railways.

15. Absorption of quasi-administrative offices staff in the Railways – The issue of absorption of the regular staff employed in quasi-administrative establishments, including recognized Union and Federation offices is under consideration of the Railway Board for quite some time. Several rounds of discussions have been held with the AIRF in this regard, and the same has been discussed up to apex level in the Ministry of Railways, with the then Hon’ble Minister for Railways also at a number of occasions. This issue, however, still remains unresolved, as a result of which, these staff are totally disappointed and frustrated. I would, therefore, request you to kindly look into this matter so that the above-mentioned staff are also absorbed in the Railways as was done on previous occasion.

16. Welfare Schemes, announced in the Railway Budget, such as opening of Nursing Colleges, Medical and Engineering Colleges, Polytechnics, Kendriya Vidyalas for the children of the Railwaymen, extension of medical facilities and pass to both dependant father and mother of Railway employees etc., are yet to be implemented by the Railway Board. The announcement of the scheme – “House to All” has also not seen the light of the day. Definitely, implementation of these schemes will inspire the Railwaymen more and more towards their duty.

17. Improvement in the conditions of railway hospitals and filling up of all the vacancies of doctors, nurses and paramedical staff – AIRF demands provision of medical facilities to the staff posted at roadside stations and ganghuts as also improvement in the conditions of railway hospitals and filling up of all the vacancies of doctors, nurses and paramedical staff. Besides this, AIRF demands increase in Fixed Medical Allowance and issue Smart Card to RELHS beneficiaries.

18. Improvement in the condition of railway quarters and colonies – AIRF demands improvement in the worsened condition of the railway quarters and colonies by repairing of quarters, roads, drains and requests the Railway Board not to compel the staff to live in inhabitable quarters and pay House Rent Allowance to such staff.

Besides the above, AIRF demands payment of “Maintenance Charges” for whitewash, petty repairs and painting works etc.

I hope, the aforementioned important issues would receive your positive attention and the same shall be resolved within a fixed timeframe. Definitely, this will bring cheer on thousands faces and will motivate the Railwaymen more and more towards their productivity.

With kind regards!

Sincerely yours,

(Shiva Gopal Mishra)

Shri Mallikarjun Kharge,

Hon’ble Minister for Railways,
Ministry of Railways,
Rail Bhawan,
New Delhi

Copy to: Chairman, Railway Board – for necessary action please.
Copy to: Member Staff, Railway Board – for necessary action please.
Copy to: Addl. Member Staff, Railway Board – for necessary action please.
Copy to: Executive Director(IR), Railway Board, New Delhi – for necessary action please.
Copy to: General Secretaries, all affiliated unions – for information.