Expressing concern over the government’s move to restructure the Railway Board and separating policy making from operations, a Railwaymen’s body on Wednesday said the move would lead to “chaos”.
“In the name of re-organisation, separating the policy making from operations, may lead to chaos,” National Federation of Indian Railwaymen (NIFR) general Secretary M. Raghavaiah said.

“Speedy execution of rail projects involving decongestion and strengthening of tracks are some of the vital areas that need to be concentrated upon for improving efficiency levels instead of meddling with the existing system in the name of re-organisation or structural changes,” Mr. Raghavaiah maintained.
Dubbed as a major reform agenda of the Modi government, Railway Minister Sadananda Gowda has announced in his maiden Rail Budget to form an expert committee to suggest restructuring of the Railway Board.
Acting upon the budget proposal, Railways have constituted an expert committee headed by economist Bibek Debroy to suggest reorganising and restructuring the Railway Board and subsequently the department, so that policy making and operations are separated.
As per the proposed plan, policymaking will focus on long-term and medium-term planning issues while operations will focus on day-to-day functioning of the organisation. In a letter to Mr. Debroy, the NFIR has stressed that in-charges of operations are the base authorities to make policy for the system to function without hassles.
Expressing its disagreement with the proposal to separate policy making from operations, the railwaymen’s body said, “Policy making needs to be in the hands of operational in-charges who can correctly forecast future requirement of assets, inputs and infrastructure for making the system more dynamic.”
Other members of the panel include former Cabinet Secretary K.M. Chandrasekhar, former Railway Financial Commissioner Rajendra Kashyap, Additional Secretary of Economic Affairs K.P. Krishnan, former chairman and managing director of Procter & Gamble Gurcharan Das, senior fellow, Centre for Policy Research Partha Mukopadhyay and former managing director of the National Stock Exchange Ravi Narain.
The Debroy committee will also estimate financial needs of the Railways and ensure appropriate frameworks and policies are in place to raise resources, both internally and from outside the government, to enable the national transporter to meet the demands of the future.