MINUTES of The Meeting of the Departmental Council of Railways (JCM) held on 05th – 06th October, 2021
MINUTES OF THE DC/JCM(RAILWAYS) MEETING HELD BETWEEN RAILWAY BOARD AND NFIR ON 05TH – 06TH OCTOBER, 2021
|S/ Shri/ Smt.
SECTION – A: INTRODUCTION
CRB & CEO as Chairman of the meeting addressed the gathering.
Chairman, Railway Board welcomed Dr. N. Kanniah, President/AIRF, Shri Shiva Gopal Mishra, General Secretary/AIRF, Shri Guman Singh, President/NFIR, Dr. M. Raghavaiah, General Secretary/NFIR, other representatives of the Staff Side and members of the Official Side to the Departmental Council (JCM) Meeting of Railways. As decided during the last meeting, DC/JCM meeting should be held on regular basis. All the issues raised during the last meeting have been addressed constructively and most of them have been resolved and the remaining issues are also being addressed.
CRB informed the Staff Side as under:-
- With the dedicated efforts and co-operation of all Railwaymen including Supervisors and Officers, during the current year upto September, 2021, we have loaded 25% more freight in comparison to the corresponding period of the last year. Our loading is 10% more in comparison to loading during the corresponding period of 2019-20 also. Our objective is to keep the loading to the level of 1450 MT and we are putting all efforts in this direction.
- We are able to run about 90% Mail Express Trains and 35% of passenger trains. There is deficit in earnings from Passenger Traffic. As our coaching services normalize, our earnings will increase.
- About 1000 Rkms of Dedicated Freight Corridor has been made operational which comprises 600 Rkms on the Western Corridor and 350 Kms on Eastern Side. 30 trains are presently being run on both the corridors. Ro-Ro traffic has also been introduced on the Western Corridor from Rewari to Palanpur. We are running one rake daily from Rewari to Palanpur and we are trying to increase it further.
- A number of State Capital Connectivity Projects have been taken up. In the next 2-3 years, all the State Capitals will be connected through train.
- National project of USBRL, Udhampur – Baramula Rail Link is underway and only 100 km route of Katra – Banihal section where a number of tunnels are involved, is presently pending. This will also be completed by the end of next financial year.
- No passenger fatality has taken place in any train accident since April, 2019.
- Punctuality performance has improved from 75% to 94%.
- Lot of work has been done in electrification. Last year, 6000 Rkms was electrified and this year also, pace of electrification is good. By December, 2023 all routes will be electrified which will increase operational efficiency and also help eco- friendly environment.
- We have continuously shown growth in automobile traffic. Instead of one rake of automobile traffic in a month earlier, presently one rake of automobile traffic is originating daily from Bangalore. Two wheelers are also now being transported by way of modification in wagons.
- By August, 2022, more rakes of Vande Bharat will be brought into the circuit and our objective is to bring 75 rakes by 75th year of Independence on the occasion of ‘Aazadi ki Amrit Mahotsav’.
- A total of 11,035 parcel special trains have been operated carrying 14 lakh Tonnes of freight.
- Our achievement in running oxygen special trains is unparallel because our own staff worked hard despite getting infected. 36,000 Metric Tonnes (MT) of liquid oxygen was supplied all over the country.
- In view of pandemic, 96 oxygen generating plants have so far been sanctioned and 36 already been commissioned as a result of our dependence for oxygen supplies in these places is over.
- Till date about 10.5 Lakh Railway employees have already been given first dose of Covid Vaccine and about 6.5 lakh have been given 2nd dose. About 17.0 lakh Railway employees and beneficiaries have been given 1st dose and 9.0 lakh Railway employees and Beneficiaries have been given 2nd dose.
- All over Indian Railways there have been about 3000 cases of employee deaths due to COVID-19. Out of total Covid death cases, in 97% cases, all settlement dues have been paid and only 59 cases of settlement dues are pending. Further, 85% cases have been finalized for CGA. The pending CGA cases are those which are under process for reasons being minor child registration, candidates having not attained the minimum education qualification etc.
- Taking into account the extra ordinary situation created by the COVID-19 Pandemic, periodical transfer orders of staff working on sensitive posts has been pended till 30th September, 2021 and instructions have been issued to take into consideration the scholastic session as well.
- Issue of Pass system through HRMS has been stabilized and in case of any difficulty in its operation the same may be brought to the notice so that it may be addressed. Settlement module through HRMS has also been stabilized. Validity of unused passes has been extended upto 30th September, 2021 in view of COVID.
- Proposal for improving the pay structure of Supervisors of Non-Accounts Departments has already been sent to MoF.
- Proposal for removal of ceiling limit for entitlement of Night Duty Allowance has already been sent to the MoF.
- The current scheme of GDCE scheme has already been extended for a further period of two years i.e. upto 31.03.2022. Selection process has been speeded up. MIS has also been activated.
- Selections from Group ‘C’ to Group ‘B’ have been decentralized to the Zonal Railways.
- Mutual transfer requests have been settled. In case of any difficulty, the same may be brought to notice.
- Decision has already been taken for recruitment in level 7 for Senior Section Engineer (SSE), Chemist and Metallurgist (CMS) and CDMS through SSC.
- Instructions have been issued for making Track Maintainers eligible for promotion as Technician-III (Level-2) in the P-way/Engineering Department.
- Instructions also issued for making Safaiwalas and Level-2 staff of Commercial & Operating Departments eligible for promotion for commercial clerks.
- The one time relaxation for retention of Railway accommodation has been granted upto 30.06.2021.
- For optimum utilization of SBF Funds, permission of reappropriation of SBF has also been granted to the General Managers.
CRB & CEO assured the Staff Side that the issues raised by them will get due attention and will be resolved. He also thanked Staff Side for the continued co-operation and congratulated all Railwaymen for their dedication and hard work during the challenging times of Covid Pandemic.
Staff Side raised following points in their opening remarks during the meeting:-
Shri N. Kanniah, President /AIRF
|S. No.||Points raised|
|01.||In the earlier days, the Central Government wanted to “Privatize” all Public Sector Assets. Due to opposition from the general public and the workers, it was camouflaged as “Corporatization”, which is now changed as “Asset Monetisation”. The ultimate aim of the Government is, to stop all the facilities and concessions, which are availed by the general public, in Railways and other public sector undertakings.As per “Niti Aayog” recommendations, only the under-utilized or un-utilized public assets alone need to be monetized. In Railways, 90 Super Fast Passenger Trains are proposed to be monetized. These trains were run even during the pandemic period and also running with full occupation. Such being the case, why the 90 Super Fast Passenger Trains need to be handed over to Private Sector, under the guise of “Monetisation”.|
|02.||On an average, by way of GST, One Lakh Crore, is earned by the Government every month. Now, for a mere 6 Lakh Crores, which also, is proposed to be earned in 4 years, the Central Government wants to hand over Indian Railways and other Central Public Sector Units for 35 Years to 99 Years to the Private Sector, under the guise of “Asset Monetisation”. Just to earn an amount, which is equivalent to 6 months GST collection, the Central Government assets comprising Railways and other Central Public Sector Undertakings, are proposed to be given for lease for a period ranging from 35 years to 99 years. For a mere 6 Lakh Crores, the crown jewels of the Nation, are being handed over to the private players, in the name of “Asset Monetisation”. It is highly objectionable to squander the national assets built over the past 70 years for a sum of 6 Lakh Crore.|
|03.||Already, countries, which had privatized the Railway Networks, such as, United Kingdom, France, Australia, Japan, New Zealand are now progressively taking over the Railways from the Private Sector, since the Private Sector, are bent upon only earning profit and were not concentrating on the maintenance of assets. Now, several foreign countries are forced to spend Thousands of Crores of Rupees, by nationalizing the assets, which were privatized.|
|04.||The importance of services rendered by the Railways has not been understood appropriately. During the Second World War, when the North-East Region was bombarded by enemy forces, it was only the Armed Forces and the Railway Men, were working and rest of all other category of people abandoned their job and ran away. The Railway Men worked tirelessly to move men and material, for the Armed Forces. Even recently, during the first and second wave of Covid-19 Pandemic, apart from Medical, Para Medical and police force, it was only the Railway Men, who volunteered to work, in several “Shramik Specials” moving Lakhs of migrant labourers to their home town, apart from running freight trains.|
|05.||Under the monetisation proposal, it is proposed to lease Konkan Railway for a period of 60 years. After 60 years, if we are going to get back the Konkan Railway, in its present form, it may not be useful to us, at that relevant point of time. The experience world over is, at the fag end of lease period, the lessee who have taken the asset for lease, stop investing/spending money in maintenance and safety related issues. Ultimately, the owner who takes over the leased asset, ends up spending more money to make his asset fit for further earnings.|
|06.||President/AIRF expressed his concern about disinvestment of Railway PSUs in particular CONCOR as control will thereafter fall in the hands of private parties.|
|07.||He expressed concern about monetization of Hill Railway in particular Ooty- Mettupalayam Hill Railway.|
Shri Guman Singh, President /NFIR
|S. No.||Points raised|
|01.||There is a lot of confusion and disillusionment among Railwaymen due to privatization, monetization of assets and outsourcing of activities. It is unfortunate that instead of relying on our own dedicated work force, train operations are being handed over to outsiders. There is need to convene separate meeting at Railway Minister level.|
|02.||It was assured that prior consultation with Federations will be made before any decision is taken on privatization or corporatization of Production Units. However, no consultation with Federations has taken place. There is no information sharing with the Federations. Adequate funds not provided.|
|03.||Maintenance of Railway Quarters of Non-Gazetted employees is very poor. The Railway quarters are not fit for dwelling.|
|04.||Pass facility is being slowly done away with. Most of the Railway employees are not aware to register in the HRMS e-pass module and also to operate it as they are staying in far flung areas and they do not have the required mobile phones. Similarly, retired persons are also facing problems in handling the e- pass module. Further, there are restrictions in issue of tickets in a number of special trains. It was requested that for pensioners, passes should be issued manually only.|
|05.||Pension Adalats are not being held at Divisional and Headquarter level.|
|06.||Deductions to the extent of Rs.2 Lakhs to 10 Lakhs are being made from the retirement dues of retiring Railway employees on account of wrong payments/excess payments of the period of last more than 5 years despite issue of Supreme Court’s order in this matter and also despite issue of Board’s instructions in this matter vide RBE No.72/2016. There are a few such cases in Divisions and in construction organizations. Immediate intervention needed.|
Shri Shiva Gopal Mishra, General Secretary/AIRF
|S. No.||Points raised|
|01.||Absorption of Course Completed Act Apprentices should be given priority on the lines of such absorptions done in the past.|
|02.||Cadre restructuring of S&T cadre has not yet been done so far.|
|03.||Cleaning of toilet droppings on tracks through hydraulic machines should be carried out in the morning before track maintenance is done by the Trackmen.|
|04.||The nomenclature of Guard should be changed to ‘Train Manager’ or ‘Train Captain’, etc.|
|05.||UMID Card should be made available to Quasi Administrative Staff for obtaining medical treatment.|
|06.||Provision of three hours lunch for Trackmen in WCR needs to be reviewed.|
|07.||GDCE scheme is not being implemented properly. Out of 69 GDCEs, only 15 have been implemented so far.|
|08.||Residency period for promotion in Accounts Department should be reduced from 3 years to 2 years on the lines of other departments.|
|09.||Employees recruited after July are not getting Dress Allowance for that calendar year which needs to be looked into.|
|10.||Due to running of Special Trains, employees are not getting berths in trains for their family as per entitlement.|
|11.||CMPs may be engaged for sub-divisional hospitals and roadside hospitals in particular on ECoR.|
|12.||ADMOs of IRHS need to be allocated zones as per their choice to improve the joining rate.|
|13.||Creation of new posts and recruitment to these posts is required for maintenance of new assets like electrification etc.|
|14.||Trackmen should be considered for Vth Grade of GP 4200 also as presently only four grade structure upto GP 2800 is available for them. Career progression of Track Maintainers through 10% intake in LDCE open to all should also be considered.|
|15.||Nursing Sisters should be given promotional avenue and MACP on the lines of Nursing Department of Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.|
|16.||On Metro Railway, Kolkata, HOER is being violated forcing the Track Maintainers to work in night shift. This is causing a lot of discontentment.|
|17.||ALPs are being detailed for the duties of Guard and for this they should be given officiating allowance and also some training.|
|18.||Employees of Railway Printing Presses are sitting idle without work.|
|19.||In Matunga Workshop, wagon/coach repairing and maintenance is being done through contractors’ staff instead of regular railway employees, even at a higher cost.|
|20.||Cancer patients on Eastern Railway are given substitute medicines instead of medicines prescribed by specialists.|
|21.||In vigilance cases, inter-divisional or inter-zonal transfers of commercial staff should be restricted to one year only.|
|22.||In Kendriya Vidyalaya, at MCF/RBL, 70 children of Railway employees could not get admission in Class-I. There is a need of opening a separate section in Class-I in KV/MCF to accommodate these children.|
|23.||Clarification needs to be sent to MCF/RBL on the issue of Pass mark for Selection against LDCE quota as last year all the candidates were declared as unsuccessful for not obtaining 40% pass mark.|
|24.||Petty maintenance amount for maintenance of railway quarters like white washing etc. be given to employees residing in railway quarters.|
|25.||Mutual transfer cases of Fitters from TRS to TRD and vice-versa in electrical department needs to be looked into.|
|26.||Loco Pilots of Mail, Express and Rajdhani trains should be considered for GP 4600 because even Senior Shunting Drivers and LPs of Goods trains are getting GP of 4200.|
|27.||Union offices all through the country are being charged electricity and water charges on commercial rates which needs to be looked into.|
|28.||Card passes should be issued to all Central Office Bearers of Federations.|
|29.||Cadre restructuring of Gr. C employees is due in 2023 but committees for undertaking such restructuring have not yet been constituted.|
|30.||Staff Side demanded that, SALUTE Scheme should be modified and implemented in consultation with the Organised Labour to facilitate appointment of at least wards of the Trackman and Loco Pilots.|
|31.||While applauding Railway Board for promoting sports in the Railways, Staff Side demanded appropriate reward to Railway Sportspersons participated in the Tokyo Olympics 2020.|
|32.||Staff Side demanded that the Dress Allowance to those recruited in July should be paid at least 50%.|
|33.||Staff Side further demanded that, necessary clarification should be sent from the Railway Board to all the Zonal Railways reg. selection of CLIs.|
|34.||Scholastic session of the wards of the Railwaymen should be considered in connection with periodical transfer and also in retention of railway accommodation.|
|35.||General Secretary/AIRF sought one time exemption for transfer of 08 vacancies from LDCE quota to Promotion Quota in Office Superintendent category in response to reference received from MCF/RBL.|
Dr. M . Raghavaiah, General Secretary /NFIR
|S. No.||Points raised|
|01.||Productivity Linked Bonus for Railway employees be announced before commencement of Pooja Festival.|
|02.||Improvement in the Pay structure of Supervisors of Non-Accounts departments need to be pursued with MOF/DOE. Similarly, the proposal regarding entitlement of Night Duty Allowance also may be pursued with MOF.|
|03.||Revision of nomenclature of Guard as ‘Train Manager’ or ‘Train Captain’ has not yet been done. This is an agreed item in the PNM/NFIR meeting held in April, 2019.|
|04.||Monetization target for Railway assets amounting to Rs.1,52,000 Crore has been announced by the Government without any consultation with recognized Federations.|
|05.||Rationalization of Govt. bodies proposals of Shri Sanjeev Sanyal, Principal Economic Adviser, regarding merger of Railway Board Directorates, Centralized Training Institutes, RRBs etc. need not be acted upon in the interest of industrial relations as these proposals are destructive. Hon’ble MR be conveyed of Federations concern and meeting with MR is needed.|
|06.||There should be a discussion on SALUTE with Board so that some justice is given to core category of Railway employees like Track Maintainers who are unable to perform the duties of the post due to poor health. NFIR’s reply in this regard may be referred.|
|07.||On NER, GDCE panel has been declared but promotion orders not yet issued till date even after one year. Due to delays in issue of notification for holding of GDCE, employees who are presently eligible as per age criteria, become ineligible. This needs to be addressed.|
|08.||Deductions from wages before retirement against alleged excess payments made during the last five to ten years need to be addressed. NR and SCR have resorted to reduction of wages at the fag end of retirement and they need to be instructed and wages be restored.|
|09.||Old Pension Scheme should be considered for those ALPs whose employment notifications were issued in 2003 and written tests and psycho test were held before 31.12.2003 but final results were declared after 01.01.2004, based on Supreme Court’s judgement. 3200 Loco Pilots etc., are involved. This needs to be pursued with Department of Pensions and PW.|
|10.||Conflicting instructions have been issued by two Directorates of Railway Board as regards selection for the post of Chief Loco Inspector as a result selection has been kept in abeyance. SCR has sent a reference to Board in this matter. NFIR’s letter be connected.|
|11.||Accepted recommendations of 7th CPC in respect of Medical Department namely OT Assistants, Dressers, Lab Superintendents, etc. need to be accorded priority.|
|12.||Supreme Court’s order regarding 5th CPC pay fixation arrears for Accounts Staff need to be implemented for the period from 1996 to 2003.|
|13.||Reckoning of Dearness Pay for Pensionary benefits in respect of Running Staff need to be solved and decided.|
|14.||Filling of vacancies be given priority as existing staff are overburdened. Lateral induction against 10% quota is not being implemented.|
|15.||Written instruction be issued for allowing the present medical card for obtaining medical treatment wherever UMID card has not been issued in favour of employees and Quasi Units staff.|
|16.||Periodical Transfer be deferred upto 31.03.2022.|
|17.||Railway employees who have joined PSUs on deputation/ absorption basis be allowed retention of railway quarter for 8 months at par with retired employees.|
|18.||Three hours lunch time for Track Maintainers in WCR needs to be reviewed for mitigating hardships.|
|19.||Instruction be issued for diversion of 10% DR quota for LDCE as agreed upon.|
|20.||PNM meetings should to be held on regular basis.|
|21.||Railway Production Units are giving best results, therefore they should be allowed to continue instead proposing for corporatization.|
|22.||Ex-gratia payment to the families of Covid-19 victims be expedited.|
|23.||Cadre restructuring of S&T staff is overdue despite assurances given by DG(S&T) in the formal meeting.|
|24.||GMs be delegated power for recruiting Course Completed Act Apprentices against 20% quota reserved in Pay Level -1.|