CHAIRMAN RAILWAY BOARD

of-sixteen-railway-zones-five-have-agms-from-a-single-cadre

Of sixteen railway zones, five have AGMs from a single cadre

This is not something very new and unusual for Indian Railway Services officers to blame and to be blamed for liking towards a particular cadre. Following the posting of two IRSEE cadre officers as Additional GM, senior Railways officials started blaming the Board for favouritism. On June 24, 2020, Navin Gulati (IRSEE) has been posted as AGM in Northern Railway and Gopinath Mallaya (IRSEE) in Southern Railway.

These two postings appear to have provided enough fodder to officers belonging to other cadres for matching the dots, drawing pattern and substantiating their own view. It is said that including Gulati and Mallaya, five AGMs were from a single cadre i.e. IRSEE. Earlier Pramod Kumar (IRSEE) was made AGM in South East Central Railway, Radhey Raman in Northeast Frontier Railway and BP Singh in South Central Railway.

Reportedly, of sixteen railway zones, five AGMs are from a single cadre i.e. IRSEE. Reportedly, many of them are not yet in the HAG+ and have been posted in clear oversight of more senior officers of other cadres. There are many who claim it to be totally disproportionate with the strength of the IRSEE cadre vis-a-vis the total strength of eligible officers in other cadres.

Even earlier, many of key posts in Railway Board were awarded to IRSEE officers. Two important establishment posts of Executive Director (Gazetted) and Joint Secretary (Confidential) have been manned by a single IRSEE officer. These posts were exclusively occupied by either the RBSS or IRPS officers. Likewise, the lucrative post of Secretary, Railway Sports Control Board, which was earlier a preserve of IRPS has been given to an IRSEE officer.

It is said that two Additional Member level ex-cadre posts of Additional Member Planning and Addition Member Transformation is occupied by a single IRSEE officer Dinesh Kumar who also holds a third AM level post of AM Electrification.

This grabbing of key ex-cadre posts by the IRSEE might have led to some heartburn and discontent in the other cadres but this is not new to Railways. They see it as a clear case of favouritism by the Chairman Railway Board, who is from the IRSEE cadre himself. But the blame-game is not new to Railways. When A K Mital (IRSS:1976) was Chairman Railway Board officers belonging to other cadres blamed the Board for being partial towards IRSS cadre.

In the past, various CRBs were often labelled for alleged favouritism towards their own cadres. Still, fair play and transparency in the handling of establishment matters in the Railway Ministry is something which may be attained through Union Government’s approved move of the merger of eight Group A service cadres of the Railways into one unified central service i.e. Indian Railway Management Service (IRMS) which may take some more time to be executed completely.

01 Jul 2020
railways-plan-austerity-measures-in-view-of-income-loss-due-to-corona

Railways plan austerity measures in view of income loss due to Corona

Railways is gearing up to adopt a slew of austerity measures proposed by its financial commissioner in view of serious dent in its earnings due to coronavirus crisis. It plans for a freeze in the creation of new posts, rationalisation of manpower at workshops, shifting outsourced work to CSR, moving ceremonial functions to digital platforms and cutting down on use of stationary by 50 per cent.

The financial commissioner of the railways told general managers of all zones in a letter dated June 19 that the traffic earnings of the national transporter dropped by 58 per cent at the end of May, as compared to the corresponding period of last year. “There is a need to explore new areas of expenditure control and enhancement of earnings,” the letter says.

It also advised the zones to control expenditure by reducing staff cost, rationalising staff and also by making them perform multiple tasks. It also asked the zones to review contracts, reduce energy consumption and cut costs in administrative and other areas.

“Immediate review of re-engaged staff and feasibility of curtailing the same to a bare minimum shall be explored. Freeze new post creation except for safety-related posts.

“Review of posts created in the last two years should be done and if recruitment has not been done against those posts, the same may be reviewed for surrendering, rationalisation of manpower in workshops. Time and motion study of workshops and production units for review of allowed time and incentives,” the letter says.

The financial commissioner also recommended that all file work be moved to the digital sphere and advised that all correspondence must be done through secure e-mails. It also instructed the zones to reduce the use of stationery articles, cartridges and other items by at least 50 per cent. It also asked zones to review and close all uneconomic branches of the ministry.

22 Jun 2020
of-sixteen-railway-zones-five-have-agms-from-a-single-cadre

Of sixteen railway zones, five have AGMs from a single cadre

By IndianMandarins 01 Jul 2020

This is not something very new and unusual for Indian Railway Services officers to blame and to be blamed for liking towards a particular cadre. Following the posting of two IRSEE cadre officers as Additional GM, senior Railways officials started blaming the Board for favouritism. On June 24, 2020, Navin Gulati (IRSEE) has been posted as AGM in Northern Railway and Gopinath Mallaya (IRSEE) in Southern Railway.

These two postings appear to have provided enough fodder to officers belonging to other cadres for matching the dots, drawing pattern and substantiating their own view. It is said that including Gulati and Mallaya, five AGMs were from a single cadre i.e. IRSEE. Earlier Pramod Kumar (IRSEE) was made AGM in South East Central Railway, Radhey Raman in Northeast Frontier Railway and BP Singh in South Central Railway.

Reportedly, of sixteen railway zones, five AGMs are from a single cadre i.e. IRSEE. Reportedly, many of them are not yet in the HAG+ and have been posted in clear oversight of more senior officers of other cadres. There are many who claim it to be totally disproportionate with the strength of the IRSEE cadre vis-a-vis the total strength of eligible officers in other cadres.

Even earlier, many of key posts in Railway Board were awarded to IRSEE officers. Two important establishment posts of Executive Director (Gazetted) and Joint Secretary (Confidential) have been manned by a single IRSEE officer. These posts were exclusively occupied by either the RBSS or IRPS officers. Likewise, the lucrative post of Secretary, Railway Sports Control Board, which was earlier a preserve of IRPS has been given to an IRSEE officer.

It is said that two Additional Member level ex-cadre posts of Additional Member Planning and Addition Member Transformation is occupied by a single IRSEE officer Dinesh Kumar who also holds a third AM level post of AM Electrification.

This grabbing of key ex-cadre posts by the IRSEE might have led to some heartburn and discontent in the other cadres but this is not new to Railways. They see it as a clear case of favouritism by the Chairman Railway Board, who is from the IRSEE cadre himself. But the blame-game is not new to Railways. When A K Mital (IRSS:1976) was Chairman Railway Board officers belonging to other cadres blamed the Board for being partial towards IRSS cadre.

In the past, various CRBs were often labelled for alleged favouritism towards their own cadres. Still, fair play and transparency in the handling of establishment matters in the Railway Ministry is something which may be attained through Union Government’s approved move of the merger of eight Group A service cadres of the Railways into one unified central service i.e. Indian Railway Management Service (IRMS) which may take some more time to be executed completely.

railways-plan-austerity-measures-in-view-of-income-loss-due-to-corona

Railways plan austerity measures in view of income loss due to Corona

By IndianMandarins 22 Jun 2020

Railways is gearing up to adopt a slew of austerity measures proposed by its financial commissioner in view of serious dent in its earnings due to coronavirus crisis. It plans for a freeze in the creation of new posts, rationalisation of manpower at workshops, shifting outsourced work to CSR, moving ceremonial functions to digital platforms and cutting down on use of stationary by 50 per cent.

The financial commissioner of the railways told general managers of all zones in a letter dated June 19 that the traffic earnings of the national transporter dropped by 58 per cent at the end of May, as compared to the corresponding period of last year. “There is a need to explore new areas of expenditure control and enhancement of earnings,” the letter says.

It also advised the zones to control expenditure by reducing staff cost, rationalising staff and also by making them perform multiple tasks. It also asked the zones to review contracts, reduce energy consumption and cut costs in administrative and other areas.

“Immediate review of re-engaged staff and feasibility of curtailing the same to a bare minimum shall be explored. Freeze new post creation except for safety-related posts.

“Review of posts created in the last two years should be done and if recruitment has not been done against those posts, the same may be reviewed for surrendering, rationalisation of manpower in workshops. Time and motion study of workshops and production units for review of allowed time and incentives,” the letter says.

The financial commissioner also recommended that all file work be moved to the digital sphere and advised that all correspondence must be done through secure e-mails. It also instructed the zones to reduce the use of stationery articles, cartridges and other items by at least 50 per cent. It also asked zones to review and close all uneconomic branches of the ministry.

khati-as-dg-hr-and-manjula-as-member-finance-acc-approval-awaited

Khati as DG HR and Manjula as Member Finance: ACC approval awaited

By IndianMandarins 27 May 2020

Indianmandarins has reliably learned that the Railway Board headed by CRB Vinod Kumar Yadav has sent two apex grade proposals to the ACC last week. The proposal appears in consonance with the framework of combined IRMS cadre yet the Recruitment Rules (RR) are yet to be framed for both the posts.

 

Reportedly, Mrs Manjula Rangrajan (IRAS) may be appointed as Member Finance and A S Khati (IRPS) may be appointed as Director General HR. Presently, Mrs Mnjula is Additional Member Finance and Khati is Additional Member Staff in Railway Board.

 

As per the Cabinet approval, both are of apex level posts and are open to all services yet officers proposed for the posts belong to the respective IRAS and IRPS cadre to which these posts were earlier earmarked for.    

 

Interestingly, the combined Indian Railways cadre IRMS and a smaller restructured Railway Board was announced with a lot of fanfare earlier in December last year. This turned out to be a ground for giving an extension to CRB however that seems to have served its purpose. In the backdrop of the COVID crisis it was declared that IRMS will not be possible this year.

brazen-discrimination-in-railway-board-is-pmo-watching-

Brazen discrimination in Railway Board: Is PMO watching?

By IndianMandarins 23 May 2020

During the COVID crisis, when officers are not able to travel and present their cases to higher authorities, the Chairman Railway Board is being blamed by several officers for discrimination and departmentalism; though Railway itself is a department comprising various cadres and services. While blaming the CRB they talk facts and examples as well.

The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet, headed by Prime Minister, approved the promotion of four Mechanical officers to the grade of Additional Member, which is a post equivalent to General Managers. Yet, one officer, A K Kathpal, the Principal Chief Mechanical Engineer of ICF, has been denied the elevation on the ground that there is a Vigilance case against him.

Even as the spate of vigilance cases against ICF officers involved in making the Train 18 have reached nowhere near conclusion, just a case in the initial stage is being used as a ploy to deny promotion to a senior officer.

The rules in this matter are very clear. Unless the vigilance case has reached finality and unless the Central Vigilance Commission has recommenced departmental proceedings against an officer, he cannot be denied promotion. Further, aas per CVC guidelines any complaint within 6 months of vacancy is not to be taken cognizance of.

In  Kathpal’s case the DPC was sent to ACC in April 2020 whereas the vigilance case now cited is much earlier. His case has not even been sent to the CVC. Yet, his promotion has been withheld and the Railway Ministry is planning to send a report to the ACC that Kathpal cannot be promoted. It is a complete mockery of ACC though it is unlikely that the ACC will agree to this nefarious design since the vigilance case existed against Kathpal even when his name was sent for empanelment as an Additional Member to the ACC.

The so-called ‘ism’, if any, is clear from the fact that the same yardstick has not been applied in the case of Electrical Officers. N K Gupta, the Principal Chief Electrical Engineer of ICF was promoted to Additional Member grade even when there were two vigilance cases pending against him. D P Dash, another Electrical officer, who was the Chief Electrical Design Engineer of ICF also had two vigilance cases against him, yet he was granted the Higher Administrative Grade. Two more Electrical Officers of ICF, Amitabh Singhal and Praveen Chauhan were promoted to Senior Administrative Grade in spite of vigilance cases against them.

O P Khare, a Stores Officer, who was the Principal Chief Materials Manager of ICF was allowed to retire with full benefits even as he had a vigilance case against him. 

The ‘ism’ is also evident from his propensity to post Electrical Officers on key posts not identified for the Electrical department. Sudhir Kumar an Additional Member in Railway Board is holding three posts of Additional Members, Planning, Electrification and Transformation. Navin Kumar, another Electrical Officer is holding two posts of Establishment Branch, Executive Director Gazetted Cadre and Joint Secretary Confidential, posts which were traditionally held by Personnel department officers. Yet another Electrical Officer, P C Lochab, is occupying the Establishment post of Railway Sports Control Board.

It is being said that Kathpal’s promotion is being denied to build a precedent to deny promotion to another Mechanical officer to the post to Additional Member or Secretary Railway Board. If the ACC agrees to these manipulations of the Ministry of Railways, it will not only be demoralizing for the officers in general,  it will also violate existing rules on vigilance cases.

railway-board-to-give-option-to-officers-to-opt-out-of-rms

Railway Board to give option to officers to opt-out of RMS

By IndianMandarins 15 Feb 2020

In an attempt to calm down unease among Indian Railways officials, Railway Board has decided to give an option to officers in the service of not opting for the unified cadre. Indian Railways’ officers see this initiative as unfair because this will merge eight distinct services which at present are divided on the basis of domain expertise.

The new service will come up as Indian Railway Management Service (RMS). There are around 8,400 Group A service officers in Indian Railways. Civil services officers from thirteen railway zones submitted a memorandums in January to the Railway Board Chairman and PMO saying the decision will negatively impact the safety of train operations and also affecting careers of 2,500 civil services officers.

The Union cabinet in December last year approved restructuring by trimming Railway Board’s strength from eight to four and unifying its eight railways services into a central service in a bid to reform the Railway Board.

railways:-crb-clears-apprehension-of-officers-via-vc

Railways: CRB clears apprehension of officers via VC

By IndianMandarins 04 Jan 2020

As the post of Railway Board chairman will be changed to CEO, its last Chairman from Indian Railways services V K Yadav, who is working on extension, on Friday addressed hundreds of officers from existing eight Group A services of the Railways (SAG and above) through video conferencing to clear air on certain apprehension plaguing them. If top officials are to be believed, Yadav clarified that merger of existing eight Group A services of Railways into a Central Service called Indian Railway Management Service (IRMS) would be an year-long process and hence it is not going to adversely affect promotional and career prospects of any officer.

Insiders say that Yadav further indicated that in another one month it may execute a few provisions:-

- Appointment of four members for the Railway Board based on functional lines (instead of existing departmental lines) and a few Independent Members, according to Apex Grade to GMs of Railways

Reportedly, it was a confidence building measure for Railway officials so that they contribute their services and are able to stop productivity and performance of railways depleting any further.

railway-board-chairman''s-tenure-extended-for-a-year

Railway Board Chairman''s tenure extended for a year

By IndianMandarins 31 Dec 2019

The NaMo administration on Tuesday extended the tenure of Chairman Railway Board V K Yadav for a period of one year beyond his scheduled retirement i.e. December 31. He will continue to head Railway Board from January 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020. His extension comes in the wake of the Union Cabinet decision to restructure the eight services into one.

In a major move to reform Indian Railways, the Union Cabinet on Tuesday approved to restructure the apex body (Railway Board) by trimming its strength to half, and unifying its eight railways services into a central service called the Indian Railway Management Service.

railways:-board-to-be-restructured,-various-services-will-be-merged-into-a-single-cadre

Railways: Board to be restructured, various services will be merged into a single cadre

By IndianMandarins 24 Dec 2019

The Union Cabinet, on Tuesday, approved the restructuring of the Railway Board. The Board will now have a Chairperson and four Members. Presently, Railway Board has a Chairperson and seven Members. Further, the Cabinet also decided the merger of different cadres into a single Railway Management System.

Instead of Railway Board Members for Traffic, Rolling Stock, Traction and Engineering, the newly constituted Board will have Members for Operation, Business Development, Human Resources, Infrastructure and Finance.

Indian Railways will now have a single cadre i.e. Indian Railway Service, instead of current eight services for various departments including Engineering, Traffic, Mechanical and Electrical.


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