ALL INDIA RAILWAYMEN’S FEDERATION
4,State Entry Road,
New Delhi – 110055
Dated: May 28, 2014
All Affiliated Unions,
Sub: Feedback of AIRF’s Preliminary Meeting held with the VII CPC
On the invitation of the Seventh Central Pay Commission for having Preliminary Interaction with All India Railwaymen’s Federation(AIRF), a delegation of the AIRF, comprising of Com. Shiva Gopal Mishra, General Secretary AIRF, Com. Rakhal Das Gupta, Working President AIRF, Com. Ch. Sankara Rao, Asstt. General Secretary AIRF and Com. J.R. Bhosale, Treasurer AIRF, met today, i.e. 28th May, 2014, the Seventh Central Pay Commission(Hon’ble Justice Shri Ashok Kumar Mathur, Chairman, Shri Vivek Rae, Member, Dr. Rathin Roy, Member and Ms Meena Agarwal, Secretary, Seventh Central Pay Commission) in Hotel Janpath(Camp Office of the VII CPC), New Delhi.
The following points were raised by the AIRF before the VII CPC:-
(i) Extension and improvement in Railway Services
(ii) Safety & Training
(iii) Wages, Dearness Allowance and Other Allowances
(iv) Living Wage
(v) Interim Relief
(vi) Merger of Dearness Allowance
It was asserted by the AIRF that the Railwaymen are Industrial Workers and are governed by the Industrial Disputes Act, Factories Act and Hours of Employment Regulations etc.
It was stressed by the AIRF that, out of 7,000 railway stations, over 6,000 are road side stations where staff are bereft of all civic facilities like housing, electricity, drinking water, sanitation, medical facilities etc., and the education of their children suffers.
Indian Railways run 19,000 trains daily and additional train services are being introduced without developing
infrastructure and adding manpower, rather manpower is being reduced day-by-day. In spite of all impediments, there has been tremendous improvement in carrying goods traffic and passenger services.
AIRF further stressed that, the Railwaymen are working round-the-clock in all weathers and arduous conditions, even sacrificing their lives to keep the lifeline of the nation(Indian Railways) in operation. On the one hand it used to be said that we(the Railwaymen), are the second line of defence, on the other, when the issue of Wage Structure and Allowances comes, the Railwaymen always get raw-deal, saying, they are “Common Categories”. Quoting examples of the Running Staff, Technician, Technical Supervisor, Operating & Commercial Staff, AIRF asked, where we are common? The VII CPC agreed that they would definitely look into these aspects while deciding wages and allowances of the Railwaymen.
It was impressed upon to the Seventh Central Pay Commission that AIRF would lead broad categories/ departments’ representation to VII CPC during oral evidence.
It was also stressed that the Seventh Central Pay Commission should consider the matter of granting Interim Relief as well as merger of Dearness Allowance with the Pay.
The Members of the Pay Commission, mainly the Chairman himself, interacted with AIRF’s representatives. The Pay Commission gave patient hearing and assured that they could understand the complexity and gravity of the Railway Industry, devotion and dutifulness of the Railwaymen and would try to administer justice to the Railwaymen by way of their recommendations.
Thereafter, representatives of the Staff Side, National Council (JCM), lead by Com. Shiva Gopal Mishra, Secretary, Staff Side, National Council(JCM), along with Com. Rakhal Das Gupta, Com. Ch. Sankara Rao and Com. J.R. Bhosale, Members, Standing Committee, NC/JCM/AIRF, held discussions with the VII CPC.
The issues of Fixation of Wages, allowances and the matters of Anomalies of VI CPC, Scrapping of New Pension Scheme, Promotional Policy, General Grade Structure along with the demands of Interim Relief and Merger of Dearness Allowance with the Pay were raised by the Staff Side, NC/JCM. Apart from AIRF representatives, in the delegation, Coms. M. Raghavaiah, Guman Singh, S.N. Pathak, S.K. Vyas, Sri Kumar, K.K.N. Kutty and B.C. Sharma were also present on the occasion.
The Chairman, VII CPC, on persistent demand of the Staff Side, NC/JCM, suggested that the Staff Side can submit separate Memorandum on Interim Relief and Merger of Dearness Allowance, so that VII CPC can seek necessary advice from the Government, as to how to deal with these issues since there has been no specific reference in the matter from the Government to VII CPC on these subjects.
It was decided that detailed memorandum on behalf of Staff Side, National Council(JCM) should be submitted by 30th June 2014, and all the departments, like Railways and others should submit their memorandum by 15th July, 2014.
This is for your information and giving wide circulation amongst all sections of the Railwaymen.
(Shiva Gopal Mishra)
ALL INDIA RAILWAYMEN’S FEDERATION
4,State Entry Road,
New Delhi – 110055
Dated: May 28, 2014
Justice Shri Ashok Kumar Mathur,
Seventh Central Pay Commission,
Sub: Preliminary submission to the VII CPC
I, on behalf of 13 lakh Railwaymen, welcome you and the Members of the VII CPC, would like to submit the following as a preliminary step towards our approach and expectations from the VII CPC.
All India Railwaymen’s Federation(AIRF) was established in the year 1924, and the leadership of this federation was heralded by the eminent personalities like Shri V.V. Giri, who was one of the founder members of the AIRF and was the General Secretary of the AIRF for long 10 years from 1927-37. Lok Nayak Jayaprakash Narayan was the President of this federation from 1947-57. Last President of the AIRF was Shri Umraomal Purohit, from 1980 to till his death in February 2014. He was also Secretary, Staff Side, National Council(JCM) since 1977.
All India Railwaymen’s Federation(AIRF) participated in the Independent struggle. It also saved Railway Industry from economic depression of 1930 and faced other challenging tasks at different times.
Railwaymen are the second line of defence, and during 1962 Chinese aggression, 1965 Pakistan War and 1999 Kargil War etc., Railwaymen stood firm in the duty post and carried out army and the necessary equipments to war front.
During natural calamities, like floods, earthquake etc., the Railwaymen transport necessary helps to the victims, and in far-flung areas in the country for conducting smooth elections. The Railwaymen run thousands of Special Trains, and during the 16th Lok Sabha elections, Indian Railways run 5,000 Special Trains in addition to split coaches for ferrying security personnel and election materials.
The Railways is a common man’s transport, cheaper than other modes of transport as also eco-friendly. The Indian Railways is the symbol of national integrity.
EXTENSION AND IMPROVEMENT IN RAILWAY SERVICES
The Railways generate resources, internally also to a substantial quantity. The Railways is having 16 Railway Zones, 06 Production Units and Metro Rail, Kolkata(a new Railway Zone).
Comparative Statement of improvement in productivity of the Railwaymen is as under:-
|Net Ton Kilometer (Million)||441762||641849||+ 45.29|
|Passenger Kilometer (Million)||615634||1098103||+ 78.37|
|Staff Strength (In Thousands)||1412.4||1287.3||(-) 8.86%|
Traffic Unit for 1000 employees*, which is an indicator of improvement is as follows:-
*Traffic Unit represents Passenger Kilometer and NTKM
Indian Railways working is of belt system. It is not an individual’s performance, but collective efforts of all sections of the Railwaymen, which represents improvement in the performance.
Safety gets paramount importance in the working of the Indian Railways. Unfortunately, new trains are being
introduced as per the demands, but without increasing line capacity, rolling stock and manpower. Rather manpower is decreasing violating the provision of the Hours of Employment. A committee in respect of Working Hours etc. of the Railwaymen was appointed by the Ministry of Railways, which had submitted its report to the Railway Board in August 2013, but unfortunately, no decision has yet been taken on the report of the said committee despite repeated representations. National average for training is 2% of the total expenditure, but the Railways spent only 0.50%.
Railwaymen are the Industrial Workers and govern under the Industrial Disputes Act and Hours of Employment & Regulations, framed under the Railway Act and Factory Act.
There are more than 7,000 railway stations, of them over 6,000 are road side stations. Large-number of stations are in the forest and terrorist infested areas. Staff working at the roadside stations are bereft of housing, potable water, sanitation, medical aid, and children education is a far cry.
Railwaymen work round the clock, and they have to remain vigilant all the 24 hours in 365 days. A committee was appointed on the Safety of the Railways under the chairmanship of Dr. Anil Kakodkar. Para 2.3 of the said report is cited below:-
|(Unmanned Level Crossing)||723||690|
WAGES, DEARNESS ALLOWANCE AND OTHER ALLOWANCES
The wages of the Railwaymen are low in comparison to the workers of the PSUs. This has been constantly agitating the minds of the Railwaymen.
1st to 7th CPC appointed only after the series of agitations, submission of Charter of Demands or after the Strike Notice.
AIRF had to launch country-wide strike against anti-labour report of the 2nd CPC in the year 1960 and against the report of the 3rd CPC(20-day long 1974 strike).
LIVING WAGE was propagated by the 1st CPC as back as 1946-47. It has been embodied in the Article 43 of the Constitution of our country, wherein directive principles have been enshrined. Unfortunately, the same is yet to be achieved after 66 years of the Independence and 62 years of adoption of the Constitution.
The 4th CPC in para 7.32 of its report at page 85 had recommended periodical revision/review of wages through bilateral negotiations.
Railwaymen need separate consideration in respect of wages, allowance and other benefits. This matter was
agitated before the VI CPC also, and the VI CPC in para 7.36.100 of its report had observed as follows:-
“Various Railway Federations have demanded a special dispensation for Railway employees keeping in view the profitability of their organization. The demand is not without substance especially as employees have to be rewarded for efficient performance of the entire organization that has yielded continuous profits without resorting to any substantial increase in the passenger/freight fares in the recent years. A separate dispensation in terms of pay scales and allowances is not, however, possible, as long as the organization continues to be a Ministry in the Central Government because it will then need to be governed by the common pay scales and allowances for the entire Central Government. In such a scenario, the optimal solution would be corporatization of Indian Railways as a Public Sector Enterprise. This would allow the Railways flexibility in determining its own compensation package”.
The Staff Side, National Council(JCM) Standing Committee, had a discussion with the Government on Terms of Reference of the VII CPC on 24.10.2013 and requested to have another round of discussions in the matter, but unfortunately the government issued the said ToR unilaterally, which was protested by the Staff Side, NC/JCM. A meeting of the Standing Committee of NC/JCM was also held on 07.05.2014, wherein the issue of Interim Relief and merger of Dearness Allowance were again raised.
It may be mentioned here that, Interim Relief was recommended by the 3rd CPC, and the 4th CPC had recommended two Interim Relief. Before appointment of the V CPC, discussions were held on different dates in September 1993 with the Cabinet Secretary, when anInterim Relief of Rs.100 p.m. to Group `C’ and `D’ employees was sanctioned prior to appointment of V CPC and subsequently V CPC had recommended two Interim Relief. Interim Relief requires to bridge the gap of erosion in the real wage during interregnum period.
MERGER OF DEARNESS ALLOWANCE
25% Dearness Allowance was merged in the Pay after series of negotiation with the Cabinet Secretary in September 1993.
The V CPC in its report had also recommended merger of Dearness Allowance when it crosses 50%, and the same was done.
It is necessary to point out here that the inflation trend prevailing during 01.01.1996 to 31.12.2005 and from 01.01.2006 to 01.01.2004 inflation was 74%, whereas from 01.01.2006 to 01.01.2011, it was 51%, and further raised to 100% on 01.01.2014.
(Shiva Gopal Mishra)
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Source : AIRF