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WR’s plan to stop motormen’s strikes

WR’s local train drivers will no longer be an exclusive cadre; they will lose their stranglehold over the city

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For all the trouble Western Railway motormen caused this year - disrupting services on the western line twice - it took just a terse, three-line letter to put them in place.
The WR on Tuesday issued an order, breaking the monopoly its 400 motormen have had over operation of local trains by ceasing their direct recruitment.
So while till now, WR motormen joined as motormen and retired in the same role, thus becoming something of an exclusive club, it will no longer be so.
The motormen often abused this exclusive control over locals, holding commuters to ransom by striking work to have their demands met.
On August 18 this year, motormen protesting the sacking of a colleague had resorted to a  flash strike in the afternoon leaving lakhs of WR commuters stranded.
The motormen deliberately timed their strike to coincide with a stop-work protest of BEST drivers and conductors. On June 17, motormen ran trains slow, throwing the entire schedule haywire. They were protesting the promotion of two motormen, not belonging to their union, as instructors at the WR’s Mahalaxmi Training Institute.
In May last year, motormen of both CR and WR struck work for almost 40 hours leaving the city paralysed.
The order issued on Tuesday breaks this stranglehold of motormen on locals. It reads - ‘It is advised that the competent authority has decided that henforth there will be no direct recruitment in the category of motormen.’
What this means is that a driver will join as an assistant loco pilot; get promoted to handle freight trains; and then go on to running suburban locals. Those who do well as motormen will get promoted as Mail/Express driver. A lucky few could go all the way and become Rajdhani, Shatabdi drivers, the highest and best-paid category of train drivers in the city.
So, the next time motormen go on strike, WR will summon drivers who have experience of handing locals to fill in. Also, since motormen will not be condemned to retire as motormen, their will be incentive for them to be at their best behaviour.
WR is the only railway zone in India where motormen are a separate category. Aware of their indispensability, the motormen formed an unrecognised union called the Western Railway Motormen’s Association that has time and again taken on the railway administration and won hands down.
The confrontations - mostly over punishments given to offending colleagues and sometimes for better pay and working conditions - have resulted in some of the most crippling traffic problems the city has ever seen.
“The era of direct recruitment of motormen on WR, something that started as a temporary emergency measure in the 1980s but continued ever since, is finally over. Hopefully in some time as drivers of other trains get promoted to the category of motormen in WR, the threat of strikes would also cease,” said a senior railway official.

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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.