MR instructs Stringent Action against RPF staff who rented out Railway Land at Mulund

Railway Minister’s quick response on Samir Zaveri’s complaint

मुंबई Mumbai: Suresh Prabhu asked senior officials to conduct an enquiry and take action against an erring official who rented out the Mulund ground owned by Railways to outsiders and collected and deposited the rent in a separate bank account instead of the Railway Treasury

Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu has asked senior officials from Central Railway to conduct an enquiry and take action against Railway Protection Force (RPF) officials who rented out the Railway Ground at Mulund for private functions and collected rent. Railway and Right to Information (RTI) activist Samir Zaveri has been pursuing the matter with the Railways. The Railway Minister ordered enquiry on Samir’s email.

Samir sent an email to the Railway Minister at 1.04am on 4 January 2015. Although it was a Sunday, within few hours, (at 11.30am on same day) Prabhu replied to the email. He also directed Anil Swarup, Executive Director, Public Grievances for the Railway Minister, and AK Singh, the Chief Security Commissioner (CR RPF) to conduct an enquiry into the episode and take action against the erring officials.

According to information procured by Samir using the RTI, the ground at Mulund was rented out to non-Railway parties for various functions on daily rent basis. Following an order from RPF head office, the officer at Mulund collected all the rent and deposited it in a separate bank account under the name of ASC, RPF. The money deposited in this account was Rs10.39 lakh during 2010 to 2014.

Samir said, “Who authorised the Central Railway RPF head office to rent out and collect the rent for the Mulund ground? Under which provision did the RPF officials opened a separate bank account and whether this is merged with the Railway Treasury? If the account is opened under RPF Rules 1987, Rule no262, then whether there was any yearly audit conducted?”

The die-hard railway activist under whose name Moneylife Foundation runs the Samir Zaveri Railway Helpline, has been raising the issue of illegal renting out of the Railway ground at Mulund. Following several letters from Zaveri, the Chief Security Commissioner of CR RPF directed the local authorities to stop giving out the Mulund ground on rent.

They also started the procedure to transfer the money deposited in ASC, RPF bank account back to the Railway Treasury. “Under which provision, the authorities have started the money transfer? Who are the RPF officers, responsible for these irregularities of giving out the Railway ground on rent to third parties and collecting and depositing the rent in a separate bank account?” Samir asked.

Let’s hope the probe would reveal all the details and irregularities, if any, and punish the officials responsible for this misconduct.