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Thursday, April 16, 2015

Information pertaining to Allowance payable to Officers/Staff of Railways – Para-wise views

Information pertaining to Allowance payable to Officers/Staff of Railways – Para-wise views


NFIR
National Federation of Indian Railwaymen
3, Chelmsford Road, New Delhi – 110 055
Affiliated to:
Indian National Trade Union Congress (INTUC)
International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF)

No.IV/NFIR/7th CPC/Corres/Pt.V

Dated: 15/04/2015

The Secretary,
Seventh Central Pay Commission,
Chhatrapati Shivaji Bhawan,
IIFT, Block B(B-14/A)
Qutub Institutional Area,
New Delhi – 110016

Madam,

Sub: Information pertaining to Allowance payable to Officers/Staff of Railways – Para-wise views – reg.

Ref: Railway Board OM No. E (P&A) 11-2014/Misc.3/7th CPC dated 20.10.2014.

Kindly refer our discussions on the subject of Pay Element and Running Allowances payable to Running  Staff during the course of tendering oral evidence before the Hon’ble Chairman, 7th Central Pay  Commission on the 14th April, 2015.

We have explained in clear terms that the issues of Pay Element and Running Allowances have been  dealt through bilateral negotiations between the Railway Ministry and the Federations’ since the last  several decades and hence the 7th CPC need not look into these aspects, although Railway Ministry has  sent certain details in this regard.


In this connection, the Federation furnishes below its comments on Railway Board’s OM dated  20/10/2014 for the appreciation of the 7th CPC.
We also invite the kind attention of 7th CPC to the following minutes of the PNM Meeting of NFIR held  with the Railway Board on 20th /21st December, 2014. “NFIR PNM 8/2011: The Staff Side requested to withdraw the reference on Running allowances sent to  7th CPC as the Federation raised certain objections to the contents thereof’.

We therefore request the Hon’ble VII CPC to leave the Pay Element and Running Allowances subject to be dealt by Railway Ministry through discussions with the Federations.

Thanking you,

Yours sincerely
(Dr M. Raghavaiah)
General Secretary

I. A brief on the pay element and the rates of Running Allowance for the running staff on the Indian Railways: ’

Para A 1:

A misleading projection is made out by the Railway Board to say that the competent authority can decide the manner of calculation of the rate of running allowance on the plea that the formula recommended by the Running Allowance Committee (RAC) 1980, which was accepted and implemented and followed since then by the Ministry of Railways, has not been mentioned m Ru’in^n8 Allowance rule 1981, nor mentioned in the Establishment Code/ Manual which is not correct at all. We invite the attention of the Honourable Commission to para 1, 2 & 3 of Running Allowance Rules 1981 published under RB ‘s No. E (P&A) II-80/RS/10 dt 17.07.81, para 3.3, in which it is clearly stated that on the basis of methodology i.e. formula suggested by the RAC 1980 the rates were fixed The Running allowance committee was constituted by the Ministry of Railways and its recommendations, which include the manner in which the rate of running allowance should be calculated i.e. the formula for calculating the rates of running allowance has been accepted by the Ministry after due consultation and agreement with the Federation and acted upon for revision of rate from 1981 onwards by the competent authority in the past. Therefore, the contention of the Railway Board as stated in their O that competent authority can decide the manner of calculation of the rates disregarding the method o calculation enunciated in RAC 1980 formula is not correct. The recommendation and its acceptance ot the formula is a definite guideline that should be followed by the competent authority and any action bereft of such an accepted recommendation is arbitrary.

Para A 2 & 3:

The contention that erosion of depression of pay scales, widening of gap between earnings of running staff vis-a-vis non- running staff after successive pay commissions itself is totally wrong statement and is an invention of the management intended to deprive the Running staff of their legitimate pay scales and emoluments. In fact the 4th and 5th Pay Commissions opined that the formula of RAC 1980 to calculate the rate of running allowances stands good and recommended to continue. The Railway Board should be asked to give sufficient proof to their contention of erosion in depression of pay scale and widening of gap in the earnings of Running staff vis-a-vis non running staff. In t is connection we invite your kind attention to para 10 and 16 of Report of the Committee to Recommend Pay Element and Kilometerage Allowance for the Running Staff, November 2008 (Joint Committee 2008), which denounces the concept of depression factor.
The Joint Committee 2008 recommended double the rate of kilometerage allowance on an assumption that the Government of India would have doubled the rate of Travelling Allowance / Daily Allowance.

This is amply dear from the reading of the report of Join, Committee 2008. We extract the para 14 of the Joint Committee 2008 “ By application of similar methodology w.e.J 1/09/2UM when the rates ofTA/DA are revised, assuming that the rate ofTA/DA for employees in the pay band 9300-34800 with grade pay of Rs.4200 is fixed at Rs.210 per day “Only on assumption that the TA/DA rate will be doubled, the rate of kilometerage is fixed in 2008. The TA rate prior to VI CPC was Rs. 105 has been revised to Rs. 340, not to Rs. 210 as assumed by the Joint Committee 2008.

In regard to the averment that though the Recognized Federations were members of the Joint Committee 2008 and a party to the deliberations are clamoring for the revision of rates, it is submitted that when the TA/DA rate increased by three times against the assumption that it will be only doubled, naturally the grievances arose to rectify the mistakes made, that is why the Federation aptly raised the issue to revise the rates of Kilometrage Allowances in DC/JCM and there is nothing abnormal in that.
Hiding behind the argument that staff side were also members of the Joint Committee cannot be a ground not to rectify the mistake.

Para B 1: No Comments- Facts are mentioned.

Para B 2:

In this para it is mentioned that the highest scale of pay admissible to Loco running staff under III CPC is Rs.550-750 but the fact is entirely different. From 1985, 20% of the Mail / Express Driver were allotted the scale of pay of Rs.700-900 on cadre restructuring vide Letter No. PC III/84/UPG/19 dated 25/06/1985 w.e.f 1.1.84 (proforma).

Mail Guard and Mail Driver were allotted with same scale of pay of Rs.5500-9000 by the 5th CPC ignoring the historical relativity but Mail and Express Driver scale of pay was improved to Rs.6000-9800 by the Fast Track Committee appointed by the Government of India.In the previous para A2, the stand of the Railway Board appears that the running allowance scheme has been introduced on the concept that depressed pay scale has been allowed to running stall. But in this para they took a directly opposite version that the basic objective of Running Allowance Rule is an orientation towards better performance etc.

Para B 3:

There was no concept of depressed scale of pay. From a reading of the report of successive pay commissions I CPC to VI CPC, it will be amply clear that the successive pay commissions never said that they recommended a pay scale to Running Staff lower than what they are eligible but for the scheme of running allowance. The running allowance is not to make good for the loss due to depressed nay scales as pleaded by the Railway. In their own words the Railway Board spelt out in para B2 ot the letter under reference, the purpose for the running allowance that read as follows “….. the basic objects of these rules is an orientation towards better performance, simultaneously ensurmg that the running staff are not prevented from earning a reasonable amount of running allowance in a month due to factors not attributable to them” and further as said in para (v) of B1 that “running allowance means an allowance for the performance of duty directly connected with charge of moving trams .

Running Staff Pay and Allowances Committee (RSPAC) 1948

Para 51 states that it appears that body consider that the mode adopted for calculating running allowance offer the simplest and the soundest basis which provides “the requisite incentive to the running staff to exert themselves to the utmost in speeding up movement and discourage dilatory method of work”.

2nd Central Pay Commission :

para 28, “ it is pay as an incentive for the safe and punctual movement of trains and a small portion of it is intended to cover travelling allowance”.

Ashruff Committee (1968):

The only measure of the efficiency of performance is the running allowance, which is co related to the distance worked by the running staff.

3rd Central Pay Commission :

Para 187 “we feel that the status quo in regard to the running allowance be maintained…..at the same time, the essential character of running allowance as an incentive for improved attendance and performance would also retained”.

Running Allowance Committee 1980 :

The terms of reference states that “the broad objective of the running allowance rules is acting as an incentive for over all improved performance”.

4th Central Pay Commission :

Para 10.456, “it has been brought to notice that the practice of including the pay element in the running allowance acts as an incentive to the running staff and should be continued. We are inclined to agree”.

5th Central Pay Commission :

Para 83-159, “ we tend to agree with the opinion expressed by the Ministry and feel that the basic objective of motivating running staff to do maximum running duties is fulfilled by the existing system of payment of running allowance”.

Para B 4, & B 5 : Facts and nothing to contest.

Para B 6: No Comments.

Para B 7:

The statement of Railway Board that the RAC 1980 was the first to assess the quantum of this pay element is not the factual position. From 1919 onwards the quantum of pay element is assessed as 75% but RAC 1980 reduced it to 30% and the pay element for retirement benefit was fixed at 60% in the year 1980. However 75% of pay element was fixed for retirement benefits till 05.12.1988 (ref: Para 10 of Joint Committee 2008). Therefore the averment advanced in this para that the RAC 1980 has first determined the quantum of pay element is totally wrong.

The further chart incorporated in para no. 7 as if it has been drawn in the report of RAC 1980 is also not correct. The RAC 1980 never made such an exercise, as clear from their deliberation in para 710 of its report. This chart and the statement are totally not based on RAC 1980 report but intended to mislead the 7 CPC and the same has to be rejected summarily.

Para B 8:

In this para the Railway Board tried to project that the 3rd CPC could have allowed a pay scale of Rs.840-1040 for Mail Driver instead of Rs.550-750, but for the existence of running allowance.

This is a claim without any ground to advance. A reading of 3rd CPC never gives such an impression that the commission recommended a pay lesser than what is eligible for a Mail Driver on account of existence of the running allowance. The 4th, 5th and 6th CPC reports were also on the same lines. A replacement scale to the existing one has been allotted for all including the running staff. The whole argument is bereft -of any evidence and the concept of measure of depression advanced by Railway Board is totally unfounded and intended to misguide the Honourable Pay Commission.

It is our view that equating the duties of Loco running staff with a non running staff in Railways itself is wrong. The duties, responsibility, nature of arduousness, the long hours of work, unscheduled working time, the highest medical fitness, the sustained attention, no relaxation after taking over charge of train, the knowledge and skill required to perform their duties, the continued absence from family for a long period of life etc are features attached to the post of running staff.

Para B 9:

We are constrained to call the attention of the Honourable Commission to the para 812 to 817 of the RAC 1980. The committee fixed the average kilometre earned by Passenger Driver per month at3950 km after due deliberation. The averment that the RAC 1980 fixed it at 5100 km is totally wrong and misguiding. The Railway Board arbitrarily changed this to 5100 kms in 1987. Even the report of RAC 2002 finds it that the average earning of kilometre in a month for a Passenger Driver is 4700Km. it is our opinion that the average kilometer is to be fixed based on factual study.

Para B 10 :

The averments in this para are misconceived and contrary to the facts. The depression concept advanced by the Railway Board has been dealt with in para B 3, B 7 and B 8 of this representation. We find no para such as 2.6 in this Railway Board letter under reference to Hon’ble Commission. The farther averment that the 4th and 5th CPC over looked this aspect is not a fact. Blaming a higher expert body like Pay Commission that they over looked facts, itself shows the mind-set of the Ministry of Railways. After accepting the recommendation and implementing the reports, blaming the pay commissions is not correct. The 4th and 5th CPC never recommended to review the Running Allowance Rules, due to increase in pay scale of running staff vis-a-vis non running staff. The averment in this regard is wrong and baseless The erosion of depression shown in the chart is not a factual position. Allotted pay scales by CPC is not based on measure of depression and the whole concept advanced by Railway Board should be rejected in its entirety.

Para B 11:

In this para, Railway Board compared the average annual wage of Group C staff and the Running Staff. In this regard, it is observed that unless the duties, responsibilities, working conditions and promotion avenues are comparable, pay scale cannot be compared with the other staff. Running Staff duties involves tour of duties in the whole year, night duties, over time working, breach of rest working etc which entitle allowances such as KMA, Night Duty Allowance, Overtime Allowance, Breach of Rest Allowance etc. The average wage of running staff includes these elements but other Group C Staff do not have such a working and do not have such allowances. Without spelling out the ingredients of emoluments taken, comparison of Running Staff and Group C Staff is incorrect and intended to mislead the commission. The historical horizontal and vertical relativities were considered by the successive Pay Commissions. Hence comparing the annual wage of Running Staff and Group C Staff cannot be accepted. This would lead to a Labyrinth.Further, Railway Board pointed out ratio between Running Staff and Group C staff upto 2004, the following table after the implementation of IV CPC upto 2004 (DA merged as DP) gives the factual position:Year Maximum Basic Pay of Running Staff + DA Rs.(6000-9800) Max. Basic Pay of Group ‘C’ Staff + DA Rs.(7450-11500)

Year
Maximum Basic Pay of Running Staff + DA Rs.(6000-9800)
Max. Basic Pay of Group ‘C’ Staff + DA
Rs.(7450 -11500)
Ratio
1998 (DA 10%)
9800 + 1274= 11074
11500 + 1150= 12650
1:1.1
2000 (DA 20%)
9800 + 2548= 12348
11500 + 2300= 13800
1:1.1
2002 (DA 40%)
9800 + 5096= 14896
11500 + 4600= 16100
1:1.1
2004 (DP 50%) (DA 11%)
9800 + 6370 + 2012= 18182
11500 + 5750 + 1898= 19148
1:1.1



The averment made in this para that the 6th CPC granted higher than normal replacement scale is totally wrong and the pay band of Rs.9300-34800 + Grade Pay of 4200 allowed to the Loco Running Staff is a normal replacement pay structure. The additional allowance allowed by the 6th CPC was on consideration of the onerous nature of duty. The averment of the Railway Board about the widening gap between the emoluments of Running and Non — running Staff is not the factual position.Reckoning of DA that was drawn by the employees’ for fixation of pay in the new pay scale is a natural course authorized, by the successive Pay Commissions.

Para B 12 :

The recommendations by CRA 2002 report submitted in 2005, has been rejected in toto by the Ministry of Railways and so mentioning this is unwarranted.

Para B 13,14 & 15

We agree that the revised pay band of Rs 9300 – 34,800 PB2 is not derived from a single scale but amalgamation of several scales starting from Rs.5000 -8000 to Rs.8000 13,500^ So Rs. 9300 in the Pay band of PB-2 will never be the minimum of Rs.5500 – 9000 of Loco Pilot (Passenger) in 5 CPC scale. On the grounds as given above, taking the minimum of Rs.9300 in pay band is not correct.

Para B 16:

The Picture conveyed by the Railway Board that the Joint Committee, which includes the Federations, observed that there was a need to review the pay element for serving employees as well as for retirement benefits w.e.f 1.1.2006, is completely a false one and far from the truth, intendedto mis-lead the employees.

Para B 17:

The averment in this para is disputed. There was no higher pay scales allowed to running staff than a normal replacement scale ( Pay band +GP). It may be noted that the replacement pay band Rs 9300 – 34 800 + GP Rs.4200 has been allowed for all Central Govt. Employees who were in s. 5000 -8000 and Rs.5500 – 9000. The Loco Pilots were in Rs.5000 – 8000, Rs.5500 – 9000 and Rs.6000-9800 also has been the same replacement pay band of Rs. 9300 – 34,800 plus 4200 GP. T ere is no iota of truth in the averment that higher pay scales than the normal replacement scales were allowed to running staff. It may also be noted that the 4 CPC and 5 CPC also allowed a normal replacement scale for running staff as of others. In 4 CPC Loco Pilots in Rs.550-700, Rs. 550 750 and Rs. 700 -900 were allotted with a scale of Rs. 1600 – 2660, & Rs 1640 – 2900 as given to all other employees in identical scale.

In 5th CPC also only normal replacement scales were allowed to running staff. Loco Pilots or Non Running staff who were in Rs.1640-2900 in 4th CPC were allowed with Rs. 5500-9000 by 5 CPC. The averment in this para is totally wrong and contradicts the factual position as stated above.

Para B 18 :

The Joint Committee 2008 did not reduce the pay element, not wholly on the sentiment of the staff but taking into consideration of the factual position described in our comments on para B 17. 1 he statement made in this para is that “the ratio between average wage of non-running staff vis a – vis average wage of running staff has significantly changed from 1980 – 81 at the stage of 1.00 : 1.16 and 1.00 : 1.69 in 2003-04. With the 6th CPC scales pay having been implemented, this, gap between the running staff and the non-running staff has further widened”, has been countered m our comment to mra B 11. Moreover the 4th, 5th and 6th CPC after taking the whole picture never found such changes in the average wage between running staff and non-running staff. Further due to cadre restructuring exercise many non-running staff gained advantage in their pay packet. Though the minimum and maximum of scales are maintained, the percentage of posts in minimum and maximum scale was largely changed after 3rd CPC. This aspect was not taken by the Railway Board and conveniently suppressed the fact while presenting average annual wage between running and non-running staff. Such being the position, the averment made in this para is unfounded.

Para B 19:

The comments offered for para B 11, B 17 and B 18 gives the real picture.

Para B 20:

The Joint Committee 2008 recommendations were based on the assumption that T.A rates would be doubled, but it is pointed out here that the TA rate for all Central Government Employees including Railway workers has been increased at the tune of 3.4 times from Rs.105 to Rs. 340. Therefore, taking Rs.210 as TA rate instead of the eligible TA rate of Rs.340 for GP 4200 to calculate the rates of running allowance is totally unjustified and hence needs revision. ( PI refer NFIR DC/JCM demand also vide Sub .No. 2/2010)

Para B 21 & Para B 23 :

The contention in these paragraphs are disputed. The Joint Committee 2008 recommended two rates of running allowance, one from 01-01-2006 and other from 01-09-2008 in para 13&14 of its report On the fact that the running allowance contains a pay element, revision in the rate of this allowance requires to be carried out with effect from 01-01-2006 and further from 01-09-2008 when allowance, i.e. the TA rate has been revised.

Para B 22:

The averment in this para has been countered in this representation in various paras above.

Para B 24:

Upward revision of the allowances by 25% when DA crosses 50 % is a recommendation of 6 CPC that was accepted and implemented by the Ministry of Railways based on Federation s demand.

Para B 25 & B 26:

PI. Refer Minutes of NFIR PNM Item 8/2013: Committee to determine the quantum of pay. element in Running Allowance -Withdrawal of Railway Board’s arbitrary decision. Federation desired to include this issue in the Committee formed to deliberate on Running Staff issues where ED (T&MPP) is the Convenor.

Accordingly it was decided to include in the list of items to be dealt by the Committee.

Source: NFIR

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