Why Would This Happen?
Indian railways will remove 25 percent of the workers of the train, stop all new hiring;
Why Would This Happen?
Because of the COVID-19 nationwide lockdown, revenue is down by about 58 per cent, according to an IE report. In addition, a slew of cost saving steps are being implemented by the national transporter.
Below are prudent steps being taken by Indian Railways to reduce the costs.
1. So far, each train has about 15 members of staff from various departments to look after linen, cleaning and AC maintenance. But now Indian railways raising that by educating them in several areas to about 11 employees. According to a senior railway officer, this would help reduce workforce strength by at least 25 per cent.
2. Many of the savings come with the cancelation of dustbins replacement in as many as 30,000 Linke Hofmann Busch (LHB) coaches saving up to around Rs 60 crore. So instead of replacing dustbins in 30,000 LHB coaches, the New Coach Factory will only take up about 5,000 coaches at the expense of about 1,78 lakh, as stated in the study.
3. Apart from that, as in the recent letter to all zonal railways, the Railway Board has placed a moratorium on the formation of new posts. As the letter says, all the posts that have been created over the past two years and are still unoccupied must be ceded.
4. Furthermore, at the level of the Railway Board a special multitasking committee was created to further examine the workers that can be qualified to perform multiple tasks for their efficient usage.
5. The role of the RPF employees overlaps with that of the commercial department's ticketing employees, and Indian Railways is reviewing this to find out how one should do the other's role.
6. Approximately 80 percent of ticket bookings now occur via online channels, and they intend to redistribute these workers to other departments.
7. Indian Railways is now examining its contracts for cleaning which are costing about Rs 1,200 crore. The letter further recommended a reduction of the cleaning changes from three to two or one, given the footfalls.
8. Furthermore, the diesel locomotive will now only be operated with prior approval from the General Manager in order to save on fuel and energy consumption. Apart from this, no replacement parts will be procured for diesel locomotives and those that are over 30 years will be scrapped.
In addition, it would appear that Indian Railways is working with various policy interventions to increase its freight load. Further, this includes a timetabled service of freight trains much on the lines of passenger train services to bring freight load that the railways have lost to the road.
Apart from these, Indian Railways is working towards increasing the speed of its goods wagons to 75 km per hour and has also recently allowed loading from multiple points for goods.