Thursday, March 15, 2018


The Chairman, 

Railway Board, 


(Through Divisional Railway Manager) 

With due respect, AILRSA hereby submit that the Loco Running Staff of Indian Railway are in deep resentment on the inordinate delay in finalising the KMA rate. The Association request your esteemed self for an appropriate decision to redress the following grievances of running staff. 

1. Request to fix Running Allowance rate with the formula of RAC1980 

After the implementation of the VIIth CPC, in order to fix the rate of KMA, a committee has been constituted to discuss the issue with the staff side. A meeting has been held on 4th and 5th January 2018 with the staff side. The points raised by the Railway Board in this issue has been replied vide our letter dated 24.01.2018 addressed to your good self. The recognized federations also sent their objection letters dated 07.02.2018 addressed to the Secretary(E), Railway Board. 

However, the official side is contemplating to destabilize and dilute this rule in order to curtail the legitimate rights and emoluments of running staff. The view expressed by the committee on behalf of management is unrealistic, illogical and against the factual position that prevails now. 

We, therefore earnestly, request your intervention in to this matter to prevail upon the official side to honour the statutory provisions of 30% mean pay plus 20 days Travelling Allowance for revising KMA Rates as per RAC1980 formula and protect the interest of running staff of Indian Railways. 

2. Allow weekly/Periodical rest independent of trip/daily rest of 16 hours. 

The Regional Labour Commissioner(C), Bangaluru, vide order no.95/01/2000-B2 dated 22/10/2001 declared that the trip rest of 16 hours and the weekly rest should be Independent of each other, and should not run concurrently or overlap each other. The said Decision reached its finality by the Judgement of Hon. High Court of Karnataka in WP No. 6607/2010 dated 13/04/2012, still this has not been implemented by the Ministry of Railways. 

It may please be noted that entire employees, whether they are under Government Service or in private/informal sector are allowed with a day’s rest on 7th day of the week. They break off duty at 17 hours on Saturday and enjoy one day rest on Sunday and resume duty at 9 hours on Monday, that works out to 40 hours weekly rest. Therefore request to allow weekly/ periodical rest independent of trip/daily rest of 16 hours. 

3. Eliminating Line Box of crew 

Vide its’ order no.2017/trans/01/Policy, dated 07.02.2018, the Railway Board directed NR and SCR to provide trolley bags to running staff for eliminating the line box of LP and Gd on trial basis. 

In this connection we submit that the equipments prescribed for train working as per the GRS is measuring 15 to 20 kgs. Asking the LP and Gd to carry this trolley bag as a luggage is too harsh and unwarranted. If the Railway wants to eliminate the line box altogether, the equipments can be provided permanently in the loco. Instead of doing so, asking the crew to carry it is nothing but thrusting an unnecessary additional burden on the already overburdened crew. The crew is already carrying their personal belongings, while going for duty as they are expected to be out of HQ for more than 2 to 3 days. Trolley bags will not run in all Railway premises where the crew are expected to take charge of the train and vice versa. Therefore the order may please be withdrawn. 

4. Restrict continuous night duties to two 

The Loco Running Staff are subjected to work in hostile situations and the working conditions imposed upon them are not conducive to ensure safety. The High Power Committee on duty hours and rest recommended to limit the continuous night duty to two followed by an order No.2016/Elect(TRS)113/Safety Misc, Dated 24.01.2017 issued by Member Electrical, Railway Board, directing not to book crew for more than two nights at a stretch, which is not been adhered by the Zonal Railways. Still the crew have to work 4 to 6 nights continuously. Request to restrict the night duties to two. 

5. Allot justified Pay Levels in the Pay Matrix to Loco Running Staff 

Rising in the ladder on a cadre means, more responsibility and more remuneration. This is the basic principal. But in the case of Loco Running Staff, every climb in ladder impose more responsibility, demand more skill etc, when they move upward from Loco Pilot (Shunting) to Loco Pilot (Goods), to Loco Pilot (Passenger) and then to Loco Pilot (Mail). But all these posts lie on the Level 6 of the Pay Matrix denying progression from one Level to another higher Level in the Pay Matrix, as is the general principle of Pay commission. Thus, the feeder and promotional posts are lying in same pay scale. The duty of Loco Pilot (Shunting) confined to station yard, whereas the Loco Pilot (Mail) has to work all express, Super-fast trains etc, but both are on same pay scale of L6 in Pay Matrix. Added to that, the same pay given to Guards are allowed to Loco Pilot (Mail) and Loco Pilot (Passenger). It may please be noted that higher medical standard, higher skill and more stress are expected from Loco Pilot (Passenger) and (Mail) than from the Guard, thus allowing with same scale and emoluments for both is totally unjustified. The Assistant Loco Pilots are still in L2 in Pay Matrix, just above the lowest employee in Railways. The Educational qualification, the induction training, the knowledge, skill required to perform the duty, the highest medical standard to hold the post not been reflected in their pay. While the VIIth CPC recommended the post of ASM in grade pay of 2800 upgraded to grade pay of 4200 on the ground that equal qualification are required to hold the post of ASM and SM, but when it comes to ALP pay scales, the same reasoning was not taken and not upgraded the grade pay of 1900 to 2400. Normally the new recruitees reach the post of Loco Pilot (Shunting) in L6 of Pay Matrix within a span of 7 to 9 years. It is ironical to note that thereafter, even if he has climbed the Ladder and become LP (Mail), he is doomed to sit, rot and die on the same scale for around 25 years. Whereas all other categories ie, Travelling Train Examiners, Permanent way Inspectors, Signal Inspectors, Station Masters and Clerks etc can move to L7, L8 and L9 in Pay Matrix either by promotion or by MACP. The move from LP (Shunting) to LP (Goods) and to LP (Passenger) then to LP (Mail) are treated as promotion. As all these posts lie in one and the same in Pay Matrix, the benefit of promotion is confined to one increment. In this situation a Running Staff from Loco Pilot (Shunting) to LP (Mail) will get only three increments in his entire service period of 25 to 30 years, on account of promotion. As the posts are treated as promotional posts the provisions of MACP are not been applied in the case of Loco Running Staff, even though various Central Administrative Tribunals declared that it is unjust, and financial up gradation on account of MACP should be on higher grades in the hierarchy of pay scales. Still no orders are issued by the Railway Board to implement the Central Administrative Tribunal order. This is the pathetic situation knowingly or unknowingly created by the Ministry of Railways. 

6. 30% Pay element not been allowed to Running Staff while allowing leave salary 

The Rule 924 (iii) of IREM stipulate that for leave salary 30% of the pay element should also be paid along with the basic pay of the staff. Even after implementation of the VIIth CPC pay matrix. The 30% pay element is calculated basing on the VIth CPC pay scale stating that modification not being done in IPAS. Therefore the program in the IPAS may be changed so that the 30% pay Element in accordance with the VIIth CPC pay matrix of Running Staff is taken while calculating leave salary. 

7. Revision of pension of pre 2016 retired running staff 

The medical practitioner and Running Staff in the Railway are entitled to add a certain Percentage of pay to their basic pay to calculate the pension. In this regard both are equally placed, only a variation in the quantum of the percentage. The Government of India made rules for revision of pension of pre-2016 retired medical practitioner, the same was made applicable for the medical practitioner of Railways mutatis mutandis. But when come to the revision of pension of pre-2016 Retired Running Staff, a new instruction has been issued by the Railway Board vide order no: RBE13/2018, completely deviating from the method of calculation. It is humbly submitted that the principle of revision of pension for pre-01.01.2016 retired running staff provided for in the Railway Board order RBE13/2018 is incomplete contrast to the principle directed to be followed by the DOP & PW by the order dated 12/05/2017 and 11/09/2017. The order RBE13/2018, instruct to take the basic pay and 55% pay element at the time of retirement, as reference basic pay for further notional fixation of pay in the subsequent CPC periods as per other (non running) staff. Where as in the case of Medical officers, the instruction contained in DOP & PW order dated 11.09.2017, instruct to add the NPA after arriving the notional pay as on 1.1.2016 and not instruct to add NPA to the basic pay at the time of retirement. Added to this, the order also state that the Notional pay of running staff in every CPC period should be arrived by the fixation formula applicable to other (non-running) staff and not to take the separate fixation table/formula for running staff issued from time to time for fixation of pay on various CPC. Whereas in the case of Medical Officers to fix the Notional Pay, separate rule/formula issued from time to time for fixation of pay on account of NPA should be followed. The Railway Board order RBE13/2018, may please be reviewed and the benefit extended by the Government of India be restored to pre-2016 retired Running staff. 

8. Selection mode of Loco Inspectors 

At present Loco inspectors are selected under General selection. In this process of selection Loco Pilots (Goods) are selected as Loco Inspectors and they are nominated to monitor and counsel Loco Pilots (Mail) and Loco Pilots (Passenger) about driving skills. The knowledge gained out of driving experience is more important for monitoring and counselling crew on line in view of safety. More over the Task force committee vide para24.8.1 states, “Loco inspectors must not only be experienced but also drawn from senior levels of the cadre. We must revert to the pre-2009 norms for selection of Loco inspectors. All Loco inspectors must be experienced Mail/Express Drivers”. The Mechanical Traction Directorate was given three months time limit for implementation. 

9. Re-engagement of the retired staff 

This Union strongly protest against the reengagement of retired staff which is detrimental to safety, which the Government is pursuing as a calculated move of implementing the recommendation of Bibek Debroy Committee to contractise 5.7 lakh permanent post in open line. This Association demand instead of reengaging the retired staff, the recruitment process has to be expedited with proper assessment of vacancies. 

10. Dress allowance 

Now the 7th CPC has prescribed Rs 5000 as Dress allowance for Loco Running staff category. Having the nature of working in outdoor and oil/greasy environment with more outstation detention and lesser Home availability, the Dress allowance is to be increased to Rs10,000, so as to have more sets of quality uniforms to instil pride in their work. 

11. Delay in disposal of appeal and revision petition in DAR cases 

This Union welcomes the time line prescribed for disposal of DAR cases. Whereas the time line for Appeal and Revision stages in DAR process are yet to be framed, many such appeals/Revision petitions are pending years together. After the penalty advice, staff decides to appeal with fond hope of seeking justice and remedy in the justice delivery system. It is needless to mention that the penalties are for corrective measure and surely not with punitive attitude. In reality the staff is not only punished but disposal of the Appeals/Revision petitions are also delayed. The delay in forwarding appeals in DAR cases, even in minor penalties are causing delay In disposal by Appellate/Revision authorities and also increases the anxiety. 

12. On national pension scheme 

This Union demand to exempt all Railway employees from NPS and all shall be covered under Railway pension rules. 

13. On lifting sealing on exemption from IT on Running Allowance 

The sealing limit of Rs 10000 per month for exemption from Income Tax for the income gained through running allowance under section 10(14)(i) of IT act 1961, was fixed immediately 

after 6th CPC. We demand the Railway Board to pursue the matter further with IT department for exempting 75% running allowance from IT without imposing any sealing limit. 

14. Minimum Recruitment Qualification for ALP post 

HLSRC headed by Dr. Anil Kokodkar and task force on safety has recommended Diploma in Engineering as minimum qualification for ALP. Not accepting this recommendation by the railway board is detrimental to Railways safety and punctuality, as Indian Railway is adopting New Generation Locomotive and Technologies in train operations. Hence in the interest of Railway Administration and train operations, minimum entry level qualification of ALP shall be Diploma in Engineering. 

15. Resuming from Leave (HLRSC report, para 24.6.6) 

Loco crew should be called for duty not before 08:00 hrs after availing leave on the previous day, shall be made mandatory and included in the CMS program to ensure its effective implementation. 

16. Air conditioning of Loco Cabs (HLRSC report, para10.3.3) 

Air conditioning of the loco cabs to be materialized in a time bound manner considering the working environment of loco crew. 

Your good self will appreciate that Loco Running Staff are working with strain and stress. There cannot be any laxity in performing their duty to run the train. Forcing them to work for 12 hours at a stretch, without allowing a clear weekly rest of 30 hours independent of the trip rest, asking them to work for more than two nights continuously, not providing with weather proof loco cabins and rest rooms are detrimental to safe running of trains and leads the crew to commit error in judgement in train operations resulting in accidents. Therefore this Union requests your good self to look into the short comings which are enunciated above. 

Thanking you, 

                                                                                                                                   Yours faithfully 

                                                                                                                Divisional Secretary, AILRSA 



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