Massive Demonstration of Railwaymen- NPS Exemption, Revision of Minimum Pay and Pay Fixation Formula, Attempt of privatization/outsourcing- AIRF
All India Railwaymen’s Federation
4, STATE ENTRY ROAD,
Dated: March 13, 2018
Respected Shri Piyush Vedprakash Goyal,
Hon’ble Minister for Railways,
Ministry of Railways,
Sub: Burning grievances of the Railwaymen – Intervention sought for
I have been directed to bring to your kind notice the following burning grievances of the Railwaymen for your kind intervention through a “Massive Demonstration” before the Parliament:-
1. Exempt the Railwaymen from the purview of National pension System(NPS)
On the recommendations of the First Central Pay Commission, Pension has been granted to the Railwaymen w.e.f. 01.04.1957. Subsequently, Family Pension Scheme has also been introduced w.e.f. 01.04.1964. Social Security of the Pensioners has extended financial stability and dignity to the Railwaymen in the family at the fag-end of their life.
Suddenly, the government introduced New Pension Scheme, now called National Pension System(NPS), and made it mandatory for those appointed in the Railway Services on or after 01.01.2004. Although, the contribution is defined, but the benefit is most uncertain, causing serious concern and resentment amongst the Railwaymen and their families.
The matter was agitated, and on the representations of All India Railwaymen’s Federation (AIRF), Shri Mallikarjun Kharge, the then Hon’ble Minister for Railways vide letter No.2012/F(E)III/1/4-Part dated 29th March, 2014 (copy enclosed for ready reference), addressed to the then Hon’ble Finance Minister, Shri P. Chidambram, had urged to exempt the Railwaymen from the purview of NPS. Subsequently, Shri Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu, the then Hon’ble Minister for Railways, vide his letter No.2012/F(E)III/1/1/4-Pt. dated 12th November, 2015 (copy enclosed) had also written to Hon’ble Finance Minister, Shri Arun Jaitley, to exempt Railwaymen from the purview of NPS and to continue Original Pension/Family Pension Scheme for the Pensioners and Family Pensioners, irrespective of their date of appointment in the Indian Railways.
The All India Railwaymen’s Federation would urge upon the Government of India that, irrespective of date of appointment; the Railwaymen should be excluded from the purview of the National Pension System(NPS) and should be covered under original Defined Pension and Family Pension Scheme.
2. Improvement in the quantum of Minimum Wage and Revision of Pay Fixation Formula for all categories of the Railwaymen
All India Railwaymen’s Federation and National Council(JCM) had submitted demand before the 7th Central Pay Commission for Revision of Minimum Wage of the Railwaymen and all other Central Government Employees on the basis of norms fixed by Dr. Aykhroyd Formula, praying fixation of minimum at Rs.26,000 w.e.f. 01.01.2014 and Wage Revision Formula by a factor of 3.72. But, Minimum Wage has been pegged down to Rs.18,000 w.e.f. 01.01.2016 and wages have been revised by a factor ranging from 2.57 to 2.81. We have come across serious agitations amongst the Railwaymen and other Central Government Employees, and the Railwaymen were forced to decide to launch an “Indefinite Strike” in the Railways w.e.f. 11th July, 2016. However, on the assurance of the Group of Ministers, viz. Shri Rajnath Singh, Hon’ble Home Minister, Shri Arun Jaitley, Hon’ble Finance Minister, Shri Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu, the then Hon’ble Railway Minister, Shri Manoj Sinha, Hon’ble MoSR, appointed for the purpose, by the government, strike decision was deferred. Unfortunately, justice in the matter is still denied by the government, causing serious discontentment amongst all the Railwaymen and other Central Government Employees and they are badly agitated on this account.
AIRF requests intervention of the government, through your goodself, for improvement in the matter of Minimum Wage of the Railwaymen and also to improve wage revision/fixation formula upwardly for all the categories of the Railwaymen and others.
3. Attempt of privatization/outsourcing of regular works through the process of contractorisation, violating the provision of Contract Labour(Regulation & Abolition) Act, 1970
There has been constant attempt to handover regular nature of jobs to the outside agencies in detriment to the interest of safe travelling of the public. With a view to intensify the matter, a Committee, headed by Dr. Bibekdeb Roy, was appointed, and on the basis of the report of the said committee, one-by-one different departmental activities of perennial nature of the Indian Railways are being handed over to the private parties. Gradually, the work of manufacturing coaches and locomotives, including their day-to-day maintenance, are being handed over to entrepreneurs as also maintenance of the railway tracks. Private parties have also been allowed to run train sets. Indian Railways has also formed “Station Development Authority” and decided to hand over the stations to the private parties gradually. The works of manning of Level Crossing Cates and patrolling of the railway tracks are also being handed over to the private parties in the name of “Gate Mitras” etc., posing serious threat to safe running of the Railways.
The government has also decided to induct 100% FDI in the Railways, and in a bit, the Indian Railway has also entered into agreements with M/s Alstom(Germany) and General Electric (USA) for manufacturing of electric and diesel locomotives, and the contracts include maintenance of those locomotives by the foreign agencies for a period of 15 years.
Presently, orders have been issued by the Ministry of Railways to close down number of Printing Presses and to hand over those works to outside agencies.
AIRF expresses its serious concern on large-scale outsourcing of Railway works part by part, causing potential threat to safety of the travelling public.
AIRF strongly opposes to the above policies of the Government of India and Ministry of Railways and seeks your kind intervention in the larger interest of safety of the travelling public in the Railways.
In fine, All India Railwaymen’s Federation (AIRF) would seek the intervention of the Government of India through your goodself to take steps for resolving the above burning problems of the Railwaymen and the Rail users.
With Kind Regards!
(Shiva Gopal Mishra)