The 95th Annual Convention, General Council and Working Committee of All India Railwaymen’s Federation(AIRF) met simultaneously in Chennai(Southern Railway) from 4-6th December, 2019, as per
A large-number of Office Bearers(right from Branch to Central level), Delegates, Observers and other
activists of AIRF affiliates, started reaching Chennai by Special Trains and Split Coaches by late evening of 3rd December, 2019. Apart from them, Youth Coordinators of different Branches, Divisions and Zones as also Office Bearers of AIRF Women Committee and large-number of Women Activists, belonging to Zonal Railways and Production Units, also reached Chennai to attend these meetings.
The Host Union – Southern Railway Mazdoor Union had made excellent arrangements for welcome,
stay and meals etc. of the participants. Railway Station premises of Chennai and nearby areas, along with streets and venue of the meetings, were beautifully decorated by the host union with festoons, wall paintings, cut-outs, posters, hoardings and colourful light etc.
The participants were full of enthusiasm and zeal and were shouting slogans of their respective unions,
leaders as also in favour of their long pending demands.
NATIONAL YOUTH CONFERENCE OF AIRF
The 95th Annual Convention of AIRF was started with “National Youth Conference of AIRF” with much
fanfare on 4th December, 2019 in SRSA Stadium, Perambur(Chennai), wherein around 5,000 youth from AIRF affiliates in Zonal Railways and Production Units took part with great zeal and enthusiasm.
Com. Shiva Gopal Mishra, General Secretary, AIRF, while addressing the Conference said, “Today we
have a serious challenge; the government is anti-working class and wants to sell Railways at any cost to private parties, and if Railways is safe, it is only on account of your strength, and in near future too this will remain safe because of your strength.” He added, “We will not allow selling of the Railways at any cost.”
He asserted on active participation of the youth in the trade union activities in view of anti-labour policies of the Government of India and Railway Ministry as also large-scale privatization/outsourcing in the Indian Railways as well as amendments in the Labour Laws.
He further said that, with implementation of New Pension System youth workers are feeling cheated and
finding themselves insecure socially and economically. NPS is by no means benefiting workers owing to
volatile market conditions all over the world. He further stated that, in the current situation when the entire world is reeling through economic slowdown, if an employee covered under NPS, retires today, he/she would get much lesser amount he/she has invested in the NPS, forget 13%-18% annual return, proudly claimed by the PFRDA. The Government has failed to ensure minimum returns on NPS that has put a bigger question mark on the whole system. AIRF has spearheaded the sustained struggle since
implementation of the NPS. “AIRF with sustained struggle had managed to incorporate provision of
Gratuity and Family Pension in the NPS, but AIRF will not leave the issue till Minimum Guaranteed
Pension is ensured for the staff coming under the purview of the NPS”, Com. Mishra added.
Bro. Steve Cotton, General Secretary ITF, Bro. Noel Coard, Head of the Inland Transport Sections ITF,
Ms Baker Khundakji, Youth Global Coordinator ITF and Bro. Jose Raul Lamug – Butch, Regional
Secretary(Asia Pacific Region) ITF, graced the occasion and extended unflinching support to the youth of
AIRF. He praised the AIRF for keeping its flag high in the struggle for the Working Class.
Bro. Sangam Tripathy, Assistant Regional Secretary(Asia Pacific Region) ITF, Ms Geetha, Finance and
Admin.(Asia Pacific Region) ITF and Ms Artika Ashdhir, Youth Coordinator(Asia Pacific Region) ITF, were also present on the occasion and expressed their valuable views.
STANDING COMMITTEE MEETING OF AIRF
The Standing Committee of AIRF, met in SRSA Stadium, Perambur (Chennai) at from 18:00 hrs. on 4th
December, 2019, to discuss the prevalent situation in the country as also to decide future strategy. All the
Office-Bearers of AIRF participated in the meeting and took part in the deliberations. In the said meeting, detailed deliberations were also held on the Proposed Amendments in AIRF’s Constitution.
20TH ANNUAL GENERAL CONFERENCE OF AIRF WOMEN COMMITTEE
The 20th Annual General Conference of AIRF Women Committee was held simultaneously on 5th December, 2019 in SRSA Stadium, Perambur(Chennai)(proceedings annexed as Annexure “A”), wherein more than 2,500 women representatives from AIRF affiliates in Zonal Railways and Production Units, took part.
The Conference started with the welcome of the Distinguished Guests, Women Zonal Chairpersons and
AIRF Women Working Committee Members.
At the outset, Com. Raja Shridhar, President SRMU, while welcoming women activists, urged upon them
to stay united and try to unite more and more as they have extra power and can do anything. He also
mentioned that women will be a deciding factor in case of struggle.
Com. Shiva Gopal Mishra, General Secretary AIRF and other Office-Bearers of AIRF were also present in
the said Conference. Other important dignities who graced the occasion were, viz. Bro. Stephen Cotton,
General Secretary ITF, Bro. Noel Cord, Inland Transport Secretary ITF, Ms Baker Khundakji, Youth
Coordinator ITF, Bro. Jose Raul Lamug – Butch, Regional Secretary(Asia Pacific Region) ITF, Bro.
Sangam Tripathy, Assistant Regional Secretary(Asia Pacific Region) ITF, Ms Geetha, Finance and
Admin.(Asia Pacific Region) ITF and Ms Artika Ashdhir, Youth Coordinator(Asia Pacific Region) ITF.