Search This website


Gangmen’s lot: 3 yrs, 57 deaths after lives of servitude


Gangmen’s lot: 3 yrs, 57 deaths after lives of servitude


They weather harsh conditions to make railway tracks usable, their lives depending on the person holding a signal to alert incoming trains. The signal does not always work, as figures show.

In the last three years, 57 gangmen have been run over by trains while working on the suburban tracks. Of these, 47 deaths have been on Central Railway tracks; the rest on Western Railway tracks.

In life, too, gangmen live in pathetic conditions. They have no career growth to look forward to, and most of them work as domestic servants for railway officials.

In 2008-2009, the death toll rose alarmingly along both lines. The reason, said officials, is that during that period there were no flagmen warning them of approaching trains. There is a shortage of flagmen, said officials.

Since April this year, CR has had eight more deaths while WR saw the death of Ram Dev on May 22. Ram Dev was hit by the Bandra-Patna Express between Mira Road and Bhayander. In the absence of a flagman, he didn’t get the crucial signal. A group of gangmen had protested at Borivali station.

WR gangmen allege a shortage of staff but administration figures say there is no vacancy. In Central Railway, there are 26 vacancies, officially.

According to S Mudgerikar, CPRO, CR, “Vacancies are not the only reason. Even a slight loss of concentration can prove fatal. We have given top priority to filling up vacancies. A large number of licensed porters have been absorbed as gangmen.”

Ajay Singh, divisional secretary of National Railway’s Mazdoor Union, listed the alleged vacancies. “Forty-one are at Dadar section, three at Andheri and 71 at Borivali,” he said. “Administration figures cite a surplus of 105 at Bhayandar section. Actually there is none; two additional lines were laid and the Railway Board created 178 additional posts.”

A gangman’s career leaves him a gangman all his life. He cannot get a promotion beyond cadre, though he may be called a keyman, mate or flagman. In rare cases, after departmental exams, they are promoted to permanent way inspectors (now called section engineers). Most never get quarters.

Then there is domestic work. “It is our destiny to wash the clothes of officials and their families , and escort their children to school and back. If we don’t obey them, they mistreat us,” said Devi Prasad (name changed). He is a graduate.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.

PME Due Date

Master Circular No. 25

Copy of Railway Board’s letter No. 69/H/3/11 dated 06.12.1974

Subject: Implementation of the Recommendations of the Visual Sub-Committee.

6. Periodical re-examination of serving Railway Employees:

6.l. In order to ensure the continued ability of Railway employees in Classes A l, A 2, A 3, B l and B 2 to discharge their duties with safety, they will be required to appear for re-examination at the following stated intervals throughout their service as indicated below:

6.1.1. Classes A l, A 2 and A 3 —At the termination of every period of three years, calculated from the date of appointment until they attain the age of 45 years, and thereafter annually until the conclusion of their service.

Note: (l) The staff in categories A l, A 2 and A 3 should be sent for special medical examination in the interest of safety under the following circumstances unless they have been under the treatment of a Railway Medical Officer.

(a) Having undergone any treatment or operation for eye trouble irrespective of the duration of sickness.

(b) Absence from duty for a period in excess of 90 days.

(2) If any employee in medical category A has been periodically medically examined at any time within one year prior to his attaining the age of 45, his next medical examination should be held one year from the due date of the last medical examination and subsequent medical examination annually thereafter.

If, however, such an employee has been medically examined, at any time earlier, than one year prior to his attaining the age of 45, his next medical examination should be held on the date he attains the age of 45 and subsequent medical examination annually thereafter.

Ammendment: It was ammended in 1993 as below

Age Group PME Due

Age 00-45 every 4yrs

Age 45-55 every 2yrs

Age 55-60 every year
As per Rly Bd's Guideline of Medical Exam issued vide LNo. 88/H/5/12 dated 24-01-1993

a) PME would be done at the termination of every period of 4 years from date of appointment / Initial medical Exam till the date of attainment of age of 45 years, every 2 years upto 55 years & there after annual till retirement.
b) Employees who has been periodically examined at any time within 2years prior to his attaining the age of 45years would be examined after 2years from the date of last PME & subsequent PME for every 2years upto 55years age.Of

NRMU 4 you

6.1.2. Classes B-1 and B-2—On attaining the age of 45 years, and thereafter at the termination of every period of five years.