Sunday, December 28, 2008

RBE 202/2008 Slno.PCVI/65
E(P&A)II 2005/RS-34 Dated26.12.2008
Railway board hasreleased the RBO for mileage
LP Mail 170
LP Pass 169
LP Goods 168
LP Shr.Sr 130
LP Shr 126
SrALP 126
ALP 121

Pay element of 30%/55% will continue.

Effect given from. 01.09.2008.
This order to be resisted. Running allowanceis not an Allowancebut a part ofOur basic.Also RAC 1980 formula to be continued.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Railway Board
Rail Bhvan
New Delhi
Fax No. 011 23381453
Respected Sir,
Subject : - Demands Day by Loco Running Staff on 23rd Dec 2008
Members of this association are observing today – 23rd Dec. 2008 as demands day all over India by wearing demand badge on duty. Association took this decision to highlight the protest against the low pay scales allotted to loco running category when compared to the work load and responsibility shouldered by them.
The recommendations of the committee appointed by railway board to determine the quantum of pay element and running allowance rates are disheartening. The quantum of pay element in the existing rates for a new entrant assistant loco pilot is Rs.2319/- and for a loco pilot goods is Rs.4050/- and the 20 day’s T.A. is Rs.4200/- and Rs.6800/- respectively ie they should get Rs.6519/- and Rs.10850/- respectively through running allowance. For that an ALP should earn 5400Km and LP/Goods to earn 6500Km every month, which is an impossible task. When this be the fate of the Junior most ones, it is better not to speak about seniors having still higher basic pay.
So the ……………… branch of AILRSA represent their protest and once again request reconsideration on our demands to prevent an out burst of growing discontentment among the most vital category of staff in railways.

Yours faithfully,

Place : ……….. Secretary
Date : 23 – 12 – 2008 …………..Branch.
Dear Comrades,
You might be listening different kind of stories from different type of people about what happened at Churchgate on 18th December, 2008 when the Motormen of Western Railway went on the "Hunger Strike" agitation.
As far as the best of my knowledge and belief Motormen of the Western Railway were submitting their representations about their grievances and demands since 20th February, 2006 at almost all the level of Railway’s administration.
When all of their grievances and demands were neither properly heard nor there was any serious effort by any one of the Railway's administration to solve any of the problems then only the Motormen of Western Railway were frustrated and declared to start "Work to Rule" from 1st December, 2008 and then ultimately there was "Hunger Strike" on 18th December, 2008. Revolutionary Greetings to the Motormen of the Western Railway.
The Document attached herewith is prepared by the Western Railway Motorman's Association and is self Explanatory in all respect.
Mahesh N. Pandya
Loco Pilot (Mail) BAMY
Divisional Secretary - AILRSA - BCT/WR
Zonal Working President - AILRSA/WR
09322287069, 09004448515, 09224700989

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Program of Action

Observe 23rd Dec. 08 as DEMAND DAY

SIT IN FAST FOR 36 Hrs. from 29th Dec. - 08
Before All DRM Offices

Regional Convention
South and South Western Railway
Sampige Road, Malleswaram, Bangalore
On 23rd Jan 2009

Mass Rally and Dharna before Rail Bhavan
on 6th Feb. – 09

If the demand are not settled we may forced to enter in to

Any Day After 1st APRIL – 09

1. Upgrade the Grade Pay of ALP to Rs.2800/-
2. Consider functional differences and allot distinct Grade Pay as follows
3. Allow 55%/30% pay element pending revision to 70%/60%
4. Extend additional allowance to all loco running staff.
5. Appoint judicial review committee on HOER as assured by Govt.

Friday, December 19, 2008

MUMBAI: The flash strike by motormen of Western Railway, which left thousands of suburban railway commuters stranded for over two hours, was finally

called off on Thursday night.

Suburban train services resumed shortly after 11 pm, after the strike was called off following discussions between motormen and railway officials, but not before angry commuters vented their ire, damaging property at some railway stations like Churchgate, Marine Lines and Andheri.

At Churchgate, hundreds of stranded commuters pulled down metal detectors and smashed glass panes of the booking office.

BEST operated additional services in view of the disruption of train services. Several commuters also opted for taxis to return home.

"Train services had come to a standstill at 9.20pm following the flash strike", Western Railway CPRO S S Gupta said. "The motormen gave a notice for hunger protest (strike) for today but there was no intimation about this strike", he said.

The motormen had refused to operate trains following the collapse of two of their colleagues during the day-long hunger strike. Over 300 motormen on the suburban line of the Western Railway (WR) participated in the agitation, demanding filling up of vacancies.

Around 9.20 pm, two motormen, apparently exhausted by the hunger strike, collapsed at Churchgate. Subsequently, other motormen stepped down from their duty following which all Up and Down train services were disrupted.
What Happens Actually
motor man of western railway went on ire and stopped the train service for 2.45 hours in peak hours, resulting in public anger.the motorman said that they were given notice one month before regarding an on duty hunger strike, but the DRM and the Sr.DEE(OP) neglected thier demands and not even permitted an elgible discussion. the demands were
1)crew link will be discussed with employees before implementation, not with the people of recoganised union, as these peoples blindly agreeing to administrations decission
2)Reduce average working KM / Day and make it less than CR or equivalent to them
3)Victimisation of motormans to be stopped immediately on silly and unwanted matters
4)one fellow victimised should be taken back without serious action
5)6th pay commission to be implemented in proper way as done in other places
6)demanding a grade pay of rs 4600/- to motormans
these demands were given one month before, and as per the programme motormen were working doiing hungerfast, and two of the members collapsed.even after that the adament & arrogant administration refused to talk constraining the motormans to take the deadly decision of stopping the train. and the drm & sr.dee(op) discussed with them agreeing the first five demands and recommending rly board to implement the 6th decision

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Employees' Pension Scheme -
Oppose Arbitrary Reduction of Benefits, Demand Improvments
- W. R. Varada Rajan
The Employees’ Pension Scheme (EPS) was introduced in 1995 as an additional scheme under the Employees' Provident Fund Miscellaneous Provisions Act, 1952. A fierce debate preceded the enactment of legislation in Parliament in this regard. The CITU and some other Left Trade Unions had demanded Pension as a third benefit and pointed out the inadequacies and shortcomings in the EPS put forth by the then Congress Government at the Centre. However, the INTUC, BMS, AITUC and HMS had lent unqualified support to the EPS as brought out by the Government and justified such support with an ingenious argument that once the Scheme comes into vogue, improvements could be made subsequently. The Government on its part included a provision for annual valuation of the Employees' Pension Fund and also assured a comprehensive review after 10 years of introduction of the EPS.
The first four annual valuation reports brought out at the end of November 1996, March 1998, March 1999 and March 2000 had resulted in grant of paltry relief of 4 per cent, 5.5 per cent, 4 per cent and 4 per cent respectively. Thereafter, the annual valuation reports for the period from 2001 to 2005 incorporated an alarming picture of huge deficit in the Pension Fund, based on the assessment of growing contingent liability. Besides, the Employees' Provident Fund Organisation and the Ministry of Labour have been resorting to unilateral interpretation of the provisions of the EPS, adversely affecting even the grossly inadequate benefits contained in the Scheme. The Supreme Court verdict upholding the EPS 1995 had emboldened the Government to take drastic measures detrimental to the interests of the workers.
The Ministry of Labour had put forth several proposals for reducing the benefit-package under the EPS 1995. These proposals were opposed by the representatives of the central trade unions inside the Central Board of Trustees of the EPF. The Government of India attempted to push these proposals at the meetings with the representatives of the central Trade Unions held with the Secretary, Ministry of Labour on 21.4.2005, 21.6.2005 and 18.7.2005 and the Minister of Labour on 16.11.2006. In all these meetings, all the central trade unions had rejected these proposals and unanimously demanded that the contribution from the employers and the Government of India should appropriately be increased in order to grant improved pension benefits and index linked dearness relief to the pensioners.
The Employees' Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) has constituted a committee to conduct a comprehensive review of the Pension Scheme. Besides, there is a Pension Implementation Committee under the CBT to continuously monitor the Pension Scheme.
But, the Governmnet of India had issued a Gazette notification (GSR Nos. 688 (E) dated the 26th September, 2008) incorporating several amendments They are:
1. Amendment to Para 12 (7).
2. Deletion of Para 12 A.
3. Deletion of Para 13.
These amendments have far reaching consequences by way of substantially altering the benefit package of the EPS'95 to the detriment of the interests of workers.
The first amendment to Para 12 (7) has increased the rate by which the amount of pension is to be reduced in the case of early pension (availed by those who have completed 50 years of age but are below the age of 58) from 3 per cent to 4 per cent. This will result in immediate reduction in the quantum of pension.
If for example, the eligible pension on completing 58 years of age is Rs. 1000 per month and the employee has to exit the job on completion of 50 years of age, either due to resignation, retrenchment, illness or otherwise, he would get an early pension applying a reduction of 3 per cent per year i.e. 24 per cent reduced from the monthly pension and would get Rs. 760 per month. This reduction rate has now been enhance to 4 per cent and in this case the reduction would be 32 per cent or the monthly pension would be Rs. 680 only.
The second amendment (Deletion of Para 12 A) is altogether eliminating the option available at present for commutation of pension. The existing provision enables a member to commute up to a maximum of one-third of his pension so as to receive hundred times the monthly pension. This facility was mad available after three years of commencement of the Pension Scheme i.e. from 16.11.1998 onwards.
If for example, the eligible pension is Rs. 1000 per month and the pensioner opts to commute one-third of his monthly pension the commuted value of will be equal to 1/3 x 1000 x 100 = Rs. 33333 and the same will be paid at the time of exercise of option for commutation. The balance pension payable on monthly basis will be Rs. 667.
This option for commutation is totally abolished now. The pensioner is thus denied the opportunity to commute one-third of his monthly pension and avail a lump sum amount to meet exigencies like marriage in the family, death of kin, medical expenses etc. The concept of commutation is a universal component of any pension scheme and this is done away with arbitrarily.
The third amendment (Deletion of Para 13) eliminates the existing option available to a member eligible for pension to draw reduced pension and avail a return of capital under any of the three alternatives provided. Unlike the option for commutation, the option for return of capital must be exercised at the time of applying for pension itself.
The three alternatives are:
i. A pensioner during his lifetime can opt to avail a revised pension of 90 per cent of original pension with return of capital equal to 100 times the original monthly pension on death of the member payable to the nominee.
ii. A pensioner during his lifetime can opt to avail a revised pension of 90 per cent of original monthly pension; the widow of the pensioner can opt to avail a revised pension of 80 per cent of original monthly pension on the death of her husband; the nominee of the pensioner can also exercise this option on the remarriage of the widow; In these case the return of capital will be equal to 90 times the original monthly pension.
iii. A pensioner can opt to avail a fixed pension for a period of 20 years notwithstanding whether the member lives for that period or not. Under this option the member can avail a 87.5 per cent of original monthly pension for 20 years and at the end of 20 years, avail return of capital equal to 100 times the original monthly pension.
All these three alternative options for availing return of capital have now been totally eliminated.
Besides these adverse changes in the benefit package under the Employees' Pension Scheme 1995, the notification incorporates an amendment to the table under the EPS revising the rates of damages to be levied from an employer who makes a default in the payment of contributions/charges payable as prescribed in the scheme.
The existing rate of damages and reduced rates are as under:
Period of Delay (Pre-revised) Rate of damages (As amended)
Less than two months 17 % 5 %
2 months & above but less than 4 months 22% 10%
4 months & above but less than 6 months 27 % 15 %
6 months & above 37 % 25 %
Such damages are levied under the Employees' Provident Fund (EPF) Scheme and Employees' Deposit Linked Insurance (EDLI) Scheme as well. The Government of India has issued two other Gazette Notifications (GSR Nos. 689 (E) to 690 (E) dated the 26th September, 2008) incorporating identical amendments to the tables under these two schemes as well.
These amendments arte intended to benefit the employers who are defaulting the remittance of contributions under these schemes. While on the one hand the Government of India has virtually abolished the inspection of establishments to do away with the 'harassment' of employers and has pledged to promote voluntary compliance, the penal element in respect of defaults in compliance have also been softened.
Only the subject of reducing the rate of damages was placed as an agenda item of the 181st, 182nd and 183rd meetings of the Central Board of Trustees (CBT), EPF held on 24.1.2008, 17.4.2008 and 5.7.2008. In the CBT, the agenda item was deferred on all the three occasions. A decision has since been taken on this deferred item of the agenda at the back of the CBT. This is highly deplorable.
While the first amendment to Para 12 (7), i.e. enhancement of the rate of reduction in the case of early pension, had been mooted by the Consultant Actuary and the Valuation Reports. But the other amendments had never been raised at any time before either in the meetings of the CBT or in the meeting of the Pension Implementation Committee. Moreover, these issues were not discussed in the meetings with the representatives of the Central Trade Unions, referred to earlier.
These arbitrary decisions have been given effect to even while a comprehensive review of the EPS' 95 is under way and the Committee set up for the purpose has held two sittings.
The trade union movement should vehemently protest over this unjustified move, which has rendered the statutory tripartite body of the CBT irrelevant and reduced the tripartite consultation mechanism in the Labour Ministry to a mockery.
Here it is also worthwhile to record here that a decision taken by the CBT after due deliberations at its 182nd and 183rd meetings for reduction of threshold limit for coverage of the EPF & MP Act, 1952, from the existing limit of 20 workers to 10 workers had not been given effect to. While the Ministry of Labour has chosen to maintain a studied silence over this decision, it has no qualms to decided with unseemly haste flouting all norms to impose adverse changes in the benefit package of the EPS' 95.
The trade union movement should demand immediate withdrawal of these Notifications and urge the Government of India to initiate a dialogue with the Central Trade Unions for bringing meaningful improvements in the Employees' Pensions Scheme like enhancement of the minimum pension bringing it on par with the minimum pension available under the central government pension scheme applicable to pre – 2004 recruits and provision of index linked dearness relief for the pensioners. For this, the contribution from the employers and the Government of India should appropriately be hiked.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Railway Board
Rail Bhavan
New Delhi

Respected Sir,
Sub: Recommendation of committee on Running allowance dt. 25th Nov. 2008.
It is learned that the committee constituted to decide the quantum of pay element and running allowance rate has submitted its recommendation. The recommendations of the committee that the existing quantum or pay element shall continue but running allowance rate shall be doubled abolishing the system of determining the rate of kilometerage on a long established formula which has been brought in Railways after a long and sustained effort of AILRSA is unjust and hence unacceptable to running staff. As the news of recommendation is spread amongst the running staff there is serous resentment among staff.
At the out set we appreciate the two conclusions arrived by the committee that the depression concept is no longer relevant vide Para 16 of their recommendation. Secondly the conclusion arrived in Para 9 and 10 that the running staff are crucial and vital to the running of the Railway and the fact that running staff productivity is critical to the IR so it is necessary that their motivation level is maintained at highest level, and upon the
implementation of the 6th CPC recommendation Teachers, Nurses, Section officers/ Sr. Section Officers of Account have been placed in the pay band which over shoots conventional Group “C” scales. Crucial categories like running staff have to be seen in relation to the difficulties, skill level and environment in which they work and running staff are distinct from all other Group “C” staff and their case has to be accordingly appreciated.
Basing on these conclusions the committee recommended to retain the existing percentage of 30% and 55% as pay element, through this Association and other recognized union asked to revise it upward to 60% and 75% giving justification for the same since 1981. the demand of the running staff may please be conceded in appreciation to their service to Railway.
Finding of the committee that in many cases emoluments of the running staff exceeds that of Group A officers is not the factual position. It may be true that the retirement benefit of running staff who are stagnated in the highest scale and drawing stagnation increment would have been reached to level of Group “A” in some cases but not in all cases, that too only on retirement benefit not on emoluments. This was so from the inception of Railway the reason for allowing higher retirement benefit was clearly spelt by the RAC 1980 and the finding of the III CPC.

In this connection, we can not accept the recommendations of the committee. We are constrained to say that the whole concept of introduction of running allowance scheme by the railway is not fully appreciated or understood by the committee.
After all, the running staff should be paid the pay element according to the Basic Pay (pay band+ Grade pay) of the individual employee and TA/DA according to TA/DA rules. This is the minimum concept and is in accordance with basic rules.
But without straight away giving it, this has been paid through the scheme of running allowance. The RAC 1980 dealt the subject well. They recommended to take the mean of the scale as a compromise formula, otherwise different and distinctive rate have to be derived to different stage in pay scale as the individual employee is entitled for pay element according to his Basic Pay. Deriving different rate for different stage in Basic Pay is cumbersome and impractical. It may also be noted that while taking mean of the Basic Pay in fact, those who are in higher basic pay will loose and athose in lower pay benefited. If the minimum of pay scale is taken to arrive at the rate, the individual employee who draws higher pay will not get the actual amout or the pay element whch is statuory in nature. If the maximum of Basic pay is taken to arrive the rate, then uninteneded benefit will accure to those who are in lower levlel in the scale. That is why the RAC 1980 recommended taking the mean pay to arrive at the rate. It was an equitable decision. And staff not protested even though theree was a loss for those who draw higher pay in the scale.
The present recommendation to take the minimum of pay band be seen in this perception. Those who draw higher pay in the pay band will get a lesser amount of pay element, that too a very drastic loss. Pay of many running staff had been fixed in the band above 22,000/- and none draws at Rs. 9,300/- at present.
The observations made by the VI CPC to pay allowances with reference to minimum of pay in the pay band in Para 7.36.97 of it report were in the nature of suggestion/ illustration and this has modified through an errata and held that, the administrative ministry concerned will need to take a final view thereon.
Therefore the recommendation may be rejected and mean of the pay band & grade pay be taken to arrive at the running allowance rate.
The committee assumed the TA/DA has been released fixing at Rs. 210, but subsequently order of Railway Board on TA/DA has been fixed Rs. 340 should be taken as TA for fixing running allowance. Therefore the recommendation of the committee on running allowance to double the rate w.e.f. 1-9-2008 has to be rejected.
20 days TA/DA in the formulae may be revised at least to 25 days considering the present the present crew links/pattern of working.
According to the finding of the committee on bench marking, the national average kilometerage arrived was at 4700 KM. Therefore the average kilometer of Loco Pilot (pass) may be taken at 4700 KM and Assistant Loco Pilot be taken as 3700 KM to arrive at the running allowance rate.
We further wish to point out that the fixation of Loco Pilot (pass) whose Basic Pay as on 01.01.2006 at Rs. 5500 will be fixed at Rs. 11650+4200 GP i.e. at Rs. 15850. And TA of Rs. 105 was raised to Rs. 340 with an increase of 3.25 times. In the case of Assistant Loco Pilots the increase in TA rates is from Rs.55 to Rs.210 i.e. 3.81 times. Therefore the recommendations of the committee to double the rate of running allowance from 01.09.2008 have to be rejected.
According it is just to demand that the kilometerage rate of running staff be raised as follows:

Loco Pilot Assistant Loco Pilot

Basic Pay (9300+34800)+4200 (5830*+20200) +1900
2 2

Mean Pay 26250 14915

30% pay element 7875 4475

TA Rates 105 55

National average KM 5100 3725

Mileage rate 195.60 149.65

After TA revision w.e.f. 01.09.2008 with RAC 1980 formula

Basic Pay (9300+34800)+4200 (5830+20200) +1900
2 2

NewTA rate 340 210

Mean Pay 26250 14950

30% pay element 7875 4475

Mileage rate 287.75 232.90
In the light of the above facts, the recommendations of the committee need to be modified duly considering our demand for increasing the pay element to 60% / 75% and taking national average kilometer of passenger crew links as 4700 kilometers with 25 days TA.

Thanking you.
Yours’ faithfully

Secy. Genreal

Friday, December 5, 2008


The Chairman,
Railway Board,
Rail Bhavan,
New Delhi.


Sub: Revision of running allowance to running staff.

It is learned that the committee constituted to decide the quantum of pay element and running allowance rate has submitted its recommendations. The recommendation of the committee that the existing quantum of pay element shall continue and running allowance rate shall be doubled is unjust and hence unacceptable to running staff.

The loco running staff is continuously protesting against the reduction of pay element from 75% to 30 / 55% in 1981. There were serious protest in fixing the national average kilometers and number of TA admissible.

Even if none of the demands of the loco running staff on the pay element and running allowance parameters are conceded, the rates will become as follows.

Existing formula suggested by RAC-1980 = {(30% Basic pay + 20 days TA) / National average KMs of Loco Pilot (pass)} x 100

Existing rate of running allowance

LP passenger = 83.80
ALP = 60.35

After pay revision w.e.f 01-01-2006

Loco Pilot
Mileage rate (9300-34800)+4200

7875+(105x20) X100 = 195.60

4380+(55x20) X100 =147.10

After TA revision w.e.f. 01-09-2008 with the existing formula

Mileage rate (9300-34800)+4200

7875+(340x20) X100 = 287.75
5100 (5200-20200)+1900

4380+(210x20) X100 =230.35

According to Bench marking orders as well as RAC-2002 National average KMs of passenger crew link is 4700 only. RAC-2002 agreed that number of TA admissible is 21 days.

7875+(340x21) X100 =319.45
4380+(210x21) X100 =235.95

Then the rate comes to,

We further wish to point out that the fixation of Loco Pilot (pass) whose Basic Pay as on 01-01-2006 at Rs. 5500/- will be fixed at 11650/- + 4200, that is at Rs. 15850/-. In other words the increase is 2.88 times. In light of the above facts the recommendation of the committee need to be modified duly increasing the pay element to 60%, taking national average of passenger crew links and 23 days TA.

Thanking you,

Yours faithfully,

cc: Union Minister of Railways,
Minister of state for railways,
Basudevacharya, M.P.
Member mechanic
Member traffic,
Member staff.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Releasing special issue of FIRE Magazine-official organ of AILRSA-
commemorating Com. SK Dhar was done

By Com. Basudeb Acharia MP,
Chairman, Parliamentary Standing Committee on Railways.
On 3rd Dec 2008, Wednesday, 16.00 hrs
at Hotel New Krishna Bhavan,
Sampige Road, Malleswaram, Bangalore.
The program was presided by Com. C. Sunish

The following were addressed the function

1. Com.L Mony, Central President,AILRSA.
2. Com.KAS Mani, Central Vice President, AILRSA.
3. Com. S. Prasannakumar, president, NREU.
4. Com. PS Prasad, General Secretary, COC.
5. Com. KV Raghavendra, Divisional Secretary, SWRMU.
6. Com. KN Rao, Vice President, NRMS.
7. Com. PAS Rao, Secretary, IRLRO.
8. Com. R. Surendran, Divisional Secretary, AILRSA.
9. Com. VJK Nair, All India Vice President CITU

Com. Saroj Kumar Dhar (SK Dhar), Secretary General All India Loco Running Staff Association is no more. Our grate beloved leader has demised on 15th September 2008 at All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS) New Delhi.
He spent his entire life for the cause of Running Staff of Indian Railways in particular and for the entire national trade union movement in general. His demise is a loss for the working class movement. Different Trade union leaders like Com. MK Pandhe, Com. Basudeb Acharia, Com. Mohammed Amin, Com. Kaniai Banerjee, Com. MM Lawrance were given their write up about Com. Dhar. This special issue is a History of Railway trade union of India.Com. Dhar is the symbol of sacrifice. He died at the age of 75. He is surviving with wife, daughter and one son. He hails from Anara of West Bengal.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Dear Comrades,
Please note and inform others by all the means of communication available.
Motormen of Mumbai Division - Western Railway have started work to rule agitation from 01-DEC-2008. The All India Loco Running Staff Association - Mumbai Division whole heartedly supports the demands and the agitation program of the Motormen's agitation. The AILRSA submitted the Memorandum on Local Demands to the Officer's of Mumbai Division on 02-DEC-2008 which included forwarding the memorandums of the Demands & Grievances of the Train Driving Staff of Vasai, Valsad, BCT/BAMY, and Churchgate (Motormen).
The Motormen of Mumbai/Western Railway have warned that they will go on indefinate hunger strike and start working the trains with empty stomach form 18-DEC-2008 if their demands and Grievances are not considered by then.
Mahesh N. Pandya
Loco Pilot (Mail) Mumbai - Western Railway
Divisional Secretary - AILRSA - Mumbai - WR
Zonal Working President - AILRSA - WR
WR CUG - 09004448515, RIM - 09322287069, TATA - 09224700989

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