Today I had detailed discussions on the pending major issues in a meeting with Hon’ble Minister for Railways in the presence of CRB and Member Staff. The meeting was held in a very cordial atmosphere and I noticed quite positive attitude of Hon’ble MR on almost all the major issues. Brief details of the discussions held is as under….
No.AIRF/24(C) Dated: January 22, 2019
The General Secretaries,
All Affiliated Unions,
Sub: Brief of the meeting held today with Hon’ble Minister for Railways on the burning issues of the Railwaymen
Today I had detailed discussions on the pending major issues in a meeting with Hon’ble Minister for Railways in the presence of CRB and Member Staff. The meeting was held in a very cordial atmosphere and I noticed quite positive attitude of Hon’ble MR on almost all the major issues. Brief details of the discussions held is as under:-
(i) Revision of rates of Running Allowances and other allowances related to Running Staff – This issue was discussed threadbare and Hon’ble MR had reservations about the proposed rates on the plea that, it will result in further increase in operating ratio. He also said that, according to Finance it comes to Rs.398/-. I explained the matter in detail and also advised him about the formula, on the basis of which it comes out to Rs.648/-. Finally, he agreed to further process the case file to MoF for Rs.525/- and advised the CRB and MS accordingly. It is expected that the case will be sent to MoF shortly.
(ii) Four-grade structure(in the ratio of 10:20:20:50) to Track Maintainers – This issue was also discussed in details and it was explained to Hon’ble MR that; the entire process is financially neutral. He directed the MS to issue orders immediately, because it has been already agreed with the AIRF in previous negotiations.
(iii) Restructuring of IT Cadre – I explained that, all the Cadre Restructuring have always been based on the sanctioned strength of the cadre and not on roll as also entire process of Cadre Restructuring is always with financial neutrality, as such, same principle should be applied in case of Cadre Restructuring of IT Cadre also. I also reminded him that, this issue has been agreed by the FC in his chamber during discussions. Hon’ble MR agreed to it and advised the MS to take action accordingly.
(iv) Promotional prospects of educated staff working in lower grades in GP Rs.1800(Level-1 of VII CPC) – I mentioned that, a large-number of highly educated people are available now in the lowest grade, who are very much curious for their career advancement. I further mentioned that, AIRF has already proposed the Railway Board to divert 10% posts, earmarked for Direct Recruitment, to LDCE open to all, so that, qualified Track Maintainers and staff of all departments and categories, who are having academic qualification, prescribed for Direct Recruitment on these higher grade posts, can be considered for promotion, which will definitely give some relief to such staff. Hon’ble MR was in an agreement with this proposal and asked the CRB and MS to take necessary action in the matter.
(v) Advancement prospects for the staff in erstwhile GP Rs.1800 and GP Rs.4600 – I explained to Hon’ble MR that, in view of poor prospects of advancement, there is serious discontentment amongst the staff working in the said two grade pay. AIRF has, therefore, proposed that, 50% posts in GP Rs.1800, i.e. Level-1 of VII CPC, be upgraded to GP Rs.1900, i.e. Level-2 of VII CPC, with financial neutrality. Hon’ble MR also agreed to this proposal and advised the CRB and MS to take necessary action in the matter.
So far as promotional prospects of the staff in GP Rs.4600 is concerned, it was informed that, Board is working out some solution to convert some posts of GP Rs.4600 to Gazetted Cadre.
(vi) LARSGESS – On the issue of LARSGESS, Hon’ble MR said, that, the Attorney General has very clearly written that, this scheme is unconstitutional, hence will not sustain before the Hon’ble Supreme Court. In the wake of this, we are proceeding to Hon’ble Supreme Court with those cases who have completed all formalities. On the issue of LARSGESS, AIRF is also likely to file a petition in the Hon’ble Supreme Court, and for that we are in consultation with the eminent lawyer.
Apart from the above, I also discussed the issues of Guaranteed Pension to NPS covered employees and improvement in Minimum Wage and Fitment Formula and requested Hon’ble MR to convene a meeting with Hon’ble Prime Minister on these significant issues. He assured that he would take these issues with all seriousness and would try to arrange a meeting with Hon’ble Prime Minister.