Feedback of the AIRF’s Leadership meeting with Minister for Railways Sh. Suresh Prabhu
All India Railwaymen’s Federation
Dated: January 24, 2015
The General Secretaries,
All Affiliated Unions,
Sub: Brief of the meeting held with Hon’ble Minister for Railways
Yesterday I met Hon’ble Minister for Railways, Shri Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu, and had discussion on various issues, right from 14:00 to 14:45 hrs.
Once again I tried my level best that the FDI should not be brought in the Railways.
I also expressed my fear that, by taking lot of money, there will be over-capitalization, and since we do not have commercial viable projects, it will be difficult to pay back the liabilities to the investors. Though Hon’ble MR has assured that there will not be any privatization in the Railways, he was still of the view that, for expansion of the railway network, money is required. He also told that, he is trying to take interest-free repayable loan for 35-40 years from the countries, like Australia, China, Japan, Canada or the World Bank.
I handed him over a copy of representation, containing suggestions for Rail Budget 2015-16, not to introduce FDI in the Indian Railways, implementation of various Welfare Schemes announced by the then Hon’ble Minister for Railways, viz. establishing of Medical Colleges and opening of Nursing Colleges and Central Schools and Technical Institutions, “Own Your House Scheme” and provision of Mobile Medical Van for treatment of Railway Staff and their families posted on roadside station, extension of scope of the LARSGESS, improvement in the condition of Railway Colonies, Roads and Running/Rest Rooms, improvement in medical facilities, filling up of Safety Category Posts, extension of facilities of Privilege/Complimentary Passes to both the parents of the Railwaymen,replacement of National Pension Scheme(NPS) with “Old Guaranteed Pension Scheme, absorption of quasi-administrative staff in the Railways, provision of proper infrastructure and manpower while introducing new trains, implementation of recommendations of High Power Committee, appointed by the Ministry of Railways, under the chairmanship of Shri D.P. Tripathi, to review duty hours of the Running and other Safety related categories of staff and also provision of proper Pathway for the Trackmen for performing their duties efficiently and safely.
I also handed him over a copy of our suggestions to increase productivity of the Indian Railways as also copies of our letters handed over to High Level Railway Restructuring Committee, constituted under the chairmanship of Shri Bibek Debroy and High Level Committee, constituted to identify the factors, issues
and avenues for improving financial health of the Indian Railways, under the chairmanship of Shri D.K.
Chairman, Railway Board was also present during course of meeting, and the Hon’ble MR told him that, the important issues raised by the Federation(AIRF) for inclusion in Rail Budget 2015-16 should be kept in view, particularly provision of proper budget for maintenance of Railway Colonies.
He also promised for better and proper communication with the organized labour in all the times to come, and also instructed the CRB to ask the MS to regularly have meetings with the federations in the committee.
(Shiva Gopal Mishra)