SRMU protests Railway Board’s Directive to Safety Supervisors

MADURAI: Condemning the Railway Board’s directive to safety supervisors not to be office bearers of railway trade unions, Southern Railway Mazdoor Union (SRMU) staged a demonstration near Madurai Railway Divisional office premises on Monday.

Interacting with reporters, zonal president of SRMU C A Raja Sridhar said there were two recent train accidents in Kanpur and Andhra Pradesh, and the Railway Board probed these accidents. The probe narrowed down on five major reasons behind accidents as track welding failure, corrosion of tracks, defective coaches, overcrowding of passengers in coaches and sabotage.

The Railway Board announced that safety supervisors can’t be office bearers of railway trade unions. Moreover, the rule is applicable to all recognised trade unions affecting SRMU in the zone. “Instead of acknowledging the failure of system and correcting it, the Railway Board is trying to project the reason behind accidents as human failure and taking trade unions for a task”, he said.

Indian Railways requires Rs 8.5 lakh crore to modernise the system because signalling, tracks and rolling stock are all old and need urgent modernisation. But the Railway Board in place of modernisation feels that debarring safety supervisors from trade union posts will ensure safe running of trains, he charged.

Around 750 members from the trade union in and around Madurai participated in the demonstration. Similar protests are were held across the zone, trade unionists said.

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