Tribune News Service
Amritsar, July 30
Though the Amritsar railway station was categorised as A-1 last year enabling it to have a station director, no such appointment has been made so far. Besides, there are several positions lying vacant.
The Ministry of Railways, in a significant measure to improve the functioning at railway stations, decided to post station directors at 75 A-1 railway stations across the country.
SS Sharma, an RTI activist, alleged the matter had been swept under the carpet while the footfall at the local railway station was steadily rising along with infrastructure and operations of trains. However, no official was appointed to hold the crucial post. However, directors were swiftly appointed at 12 railway stations, namely Delhi, New Delhi, Secundrabad, Chennai Central, Bengaluru, Howrah, Sealdah, Ahmedabad, Jaipur and three stations in Mumbai, he said.
He said the Ministry of Railways had announced to appoint the directors at remaining 63 railway stations by the end of this year.
According to Sharma, the motive was to ensure that the stations function as excellence centres for passengers with the additional objective to ensure vigilant and sensitive customer service and also superior commercial sense. What to talk about appointing a special director, most of the sections at the railway station are grappling with staff shortage.
The crucial post of assistant traffic manager has been lying unoccupied for the past nearly two years. As a stopgap arrangement, the divisional traffic manager at Ludhiana has been given the additional charge.
The non-availability of a regular official at this post has compelled the railways authorities to shift high officer requisite (HOR) quota to Ferozepur, which houses the divisional headquarters under which the Amritsar railway station falls.
A senior leader of Railway Mazdoor Union (RMU), Rajesh Kumar, said approximately 40 per cent of the posts were lying vacant at the local railway station. The situation is grim at the national level as over 2.50 lakh posts are lying unoccupied. Notwithstanding our constant agitations on the issue, the successive governments have failed to recruit more employees,” he remarked.
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