Wednesday, July 8, 2009

- DRAFT-



To

Shri.
Hon’ble Member of Parliament.

Respected Sir,

This Union represents the Loco Running staff of Indian Railways. This Union wishes to place the grievances of Loco Running staff before your esteemed self. We also earnestly request your good self to raise the issue before the Parliament and persuade the Ministry of Railway to concede the demands of staff.
To draw the attention of Ministry of Railways to our grievances we had staged almost all trade union activities for the past several years, but in vain. All our effort to settle the grievances becomes wild cry. No response shown by the Railway Board in this matter. We are at the last end, and serious protest and resentment brews among staff. We are constrained to take decision to go to strike. Before that once more we try to persuade the Ministry of Railways to look after our grievances; which are as follows.
1. Reduce the duty hours at a stretch to 8 hours for Loco Running staff of Indian Railways.
2. Upgrade the Grade Pay of Asst. Loco Pilot to Rs. 2800/-
3. Allow separate Grade Pay for various Loco Pilots.
These issues were well explained in the attached memorandum addressed to Miss. Mamata Banarjee, Hon’ble Minister for Railways.
DUTY HOURS:-
The duty hours at stretch of Loco Running staff is an issue from the inception of Railway. Many Commissions, such as ‘Justice Rajadhyksha Committee’, The Railway Labour Tribunal of 1969 are made several recommendations. The ‘Rajadhyksha Committee’ fixed it as 14 hours duty in the year 1947. The Railway Labour Tribunal – 1969 fixed it at 12 hours.
In the year 1973, the Loco Running staff went on strike. In the conciliation held between then Labour Minister Shri. Ragunatha Reddy and the Railway Minister, the Government agreed to limit the duty hours to 10 hours from Signing ON to Sign OFF. This agreement and decision were announced in the floor of Parliament on 13.08.1973. The Rules were changed in 31.08.1978. There after the said rule which limit the working hours to 10 hours were diluted by the Railway Board against the will of the Government, as if Railway Board have not responsible towards Government decision and the constitution of India.
Now by an Order dated 13.04.1992, the duty hours at a stretch raised to 13 hours. We are not demanding reduction of duty hours per week which stands at 52 hours, but what we request that at a stretch duty should not go beyond 8 hours.
The Parliament Standing Committee on Railway headed by Shri. Basudev Acharya .M.P recommended to reduce the duty hours to 8 hours for Loco Running staff.
PAY AND ALLOWANCE:-
The Asst. Loco Pilots of Indian Railway were recruited through Railway Recruitment Board. The Minimum qualification is SSLC + ITI. They have to pass a stringent medical exam and induction training for 9 months before absorbing as ALP. There responsibility is to run the train safely and punctually. The job attribute is much higher than the lowest class of employees in Government service. But they are paid with a Grade Pay of Rs. 1900/-, just Rs. 100/- more than the lowest class of Government employee. This is the grievance, justification is to raise the Grade Pay from 1900 to Rs. 2800/-.
The Loco Pilots, working Goods trains, Passenger trains, Mail and Super fast trains are distinctive responsibility and require different skill. They all being paid with one and the same Grade Pay of Rs. 4200/-. This need to be reviewed and separate and higher Grade Pay be allowed to them.
We plead before your esteemed-self to intervene and persuade the Ministry of Railway to concede these demand. We want an amicable settlement. We should not be drive to the extreme trade union action, THE STRIKE.
Thanking you,
Yours faithfully,




M. N. PRASAD,
New Delhi, Secretary General,
Dated All India Loco Running Staff Association.

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