Organization of Indian Railways

Indian Railways (IR) is at present the biggest public undertaking of the Government of India, having a capital-at-charge of about Rs 560,000 million. The enactments regulating the construction and operation of railways in India are the Indian Tramway Act of 1816 and the Indian Railway Act of 1890 as amended from time to time. The executive authority in connection with the administration of the railways vests with the Central Government and the same has been delegated to the Railway Board as per the Indian Railway Act referred to above.

Railway Board

The responsibility of the administration and management of Indian Railways rests with the Railway Board under the overall supervision of the Minister for Railways. The Railway Board exercises all the powers of the Central Government in respect of the regulation, construction, maintenance, and operation of the Railways.

The Railway Board consists of a chairman, a financial commissioner for railways, and five other functional members. The chairman is the ex-officio principal secretary to the Government of India in the Ministry of Railways. He reports to the Minister for Railways and is responsible for making decisions on technical and administrative matters and advising the Government of India on matters of railway policy. All policy and other important matters are put up to the Minister through the chairman or other board members.

The financial commissioner for railways is vested with the full powers of the Government of India to sanction railway expenditure and is the ex-officio secretary to the Government of India in financial Ministry of Railways matters. The members of the Railway Board are separately in charge of matters relating to staff, civil

engineering, traffic, mechanical engineering, and electrical engineering. They function as ex-officio secretaries to the Government of India in their respective spheres.

To be able to effectively tackle the additional duties and responsibilities arising from increased tempo of work, the Railway Board is assisted by a number of technical officers designated additional members and executive directors, who are in-charge of different directorates such as civil engineering, mechanical, electrical, stores, traffic and transportation, commercial, and planning and are responsible for carrying out technical functions. These officers, however, do not make major policy decisions.

Research Design and Standards Organisation

The Research Designs and Standards Organisation (RDSO) is headquartered at Lucknow. It is headed by a director general who has a team of specialists from different fields of railways. RDSO functions as a technical adviser and consultant to the Railway Board, the zonal railways, and production units as well as to public and private sector undertakings with respect to the designs and standardization of railway equipment.

RDSO has also been approved for its quality management system ISO 9001:2000.

Zonal Railways

The entire railway system was earlier divided into nine zonal railways. To increase efficiency, the Railway Ministry decided to set up seven new railway zones, namely, North Western Railway at Jaipur, East Central Railway at Hajipur, East Coast Railway at Bhubaneswar, North Central Railway at Allahabad, South Western Railway at Bangalore, West Central Railway at Jabalpur, and South East Central Railway at Bilaspur. All the new railway zones have been fully functional from 1 April 2003.

Presently, Indian Railways is divided into 16 zones, each having different territorial jurisdictions which vary from 2300 to 7000 route km. The route kilometres of various zonal railways are given in Table 1.3.

Table 1.3 Zonewise track length as on 31 March 2004

Zone

Railway Headquarter

Route kilometre*

Running

Total

BG

MG

NG

Total

track

track

kmf

Kmf

Central

CR

Mumbai

3226

0.00

573

3799

5766

8072

Eastern

ER

Kolkata

2252

0.00

133

2385

3922

6447

East

Central

ECR

Hajipur

2668

817

0.00

3485

4883

7490

East Coast EcoR

Bhubaneswar

2426

0.00

90

2516

3635

4639

Northern

NR

Delhi

6459

88

261

6808

8421

11,463

North

Central

NCR

Allahabad

2598

193

289

3080

4346

4900

(contd)

Zone

Railway Headquarter

Route kilometre

*

Running

Total

BG

MG

NG

Total

track

kmf

track Kmf

North

Eastern

NER

Gorakhpur

1518

1893

0.00

3411

4280

4873

Northeast

Frontier

NFR

Maligaon

1939

1922

87

3949

4159

5807

North

Western

NWR

Jaipur

2831

2625

0.00

5456

6077

6842

Southern

SR

Chennai

3163

2072

0.00

5234

6629

8340

South

Central

SCR

Secunderabad

4705

1044

0.00

5749

7530

9144

South

Eastern

SER

Kolkata

2316

0.00

106

2422

4701

6681

South East SECR Central

Bilaspur

1599

0.00

798

2398

3360

4095

South

Western

SWR

Hubli

2621

450

0.00

3071

3476

3892

Western

WR

Mumbai

3559

2186

787

6532

7700

10,271

West

Central

WCR

Jabalpur

2926

0.00

0.00

2926

4974

5530

Grand total

46,806

13,290

3124

63,221

83,859 108,486

* Route kilometre indicates the length of a route from one point to another point. f Running track kilometre is the length of running track on that route; on a double-line section, the running track kilometre is about twice the route kilometre.

{ Total track kilometre indicates the running track kilometre including turnouts, etc., after taking their due weightage into account.

The zonal railways take care of the railway business in their respective areas and are responsible for management and planning of all work. Each zonal railway is administered by a general manager assisted by additional general managers and heads of departments of different disciplines, namely, civil engineering, mechanical, operating, commercial, accounts, security, signals and telecommunications, electrical, personnel, medical, etc. The typical organization of a zonal railway is given in Fig. 1.1. The duties of the various heads of departments are given in Table 1.4.

Table 1.4 Duties of the various principal heads of the department of zonal railways

Designation General manager

Additional general

Abbreviation Brief duties

GM Overall incharge of a zonal railway of about 2500 to 7000 route

AGM Second in position. In charge of general

Senior deputy general

SDGM Chief vigilance officer and in charge of

Chief public relations officer

CPRO Public relation work

Chief personal officer

CPO Establishment matters and labour relations

Financial adviser and chief accounts officer

FA&CAO Accounting and all financial matters

Chief operations manager

COM Running of trains and transport of

Chief commercial

CCM Sales and marketing of passenger and

manager Chief engineer

goods services

CE Maintenance and management of track

Chief mechanical

CME Maintenance and repair of locomotives,

engineer

Chief signal and

telecommunication

coaches, and wagons

CSTE Maintenance and construction of signalling and telecommunication

engineer

Chief electrical engineer

facilities

CEE Maintenance and repair of electric locomotives, electric multiple units

Chief security

(EMUs) stock, and all electric installations CSC Security of railway installations

commissioner

Controller of stores

COS Procurement and supply of all stores items

Chief medical officer

CMO Medical attention and healthcare of all

Chief administrative officer (construction)

railway employees

CAO (c) Construction of all major engineering projects

Production Units

Apart from zonal railways, there are six production units. The details given in Table 1.5.

Table 1.5 Production or manufacturing units

Unit

Headquarters

Production

Chittranjan Locomotive Works

Chittaranjan

Electric locomotives

Diesel Locomotive Works

Varanasi

Diesel locomotives

Integral Coach Factory

Chennai

Coaches

Diesel Components Works

Patiala

Diesel components

Rail Coach Factory

Kapurthala

Coaches

Wheel and Axle Plant

Bangalore

Wheels and axles

COFMOW

The Central Organisation for Modernization of Workshops (COFMOW) was set up in 1979 as a specialized agency to implement the various workshop modernization programs of Indian Railways. Most of the workshops of IR are over 100 years old and COFMOW is modernizing these workshops in a planned way with the assistance of the World Bank.

COFMOW also provides consultancy and engineering inputs for technology upgradation, productivity improvement, machinery selection, and procurement besides training of personnel in operation and maintenance of manufacturing infrastructure.

COFMOW has been actively involved in the conversion of metre gauge rolling stock repair workshops to broad gauge repair shops by identifying and selecting compatible machinery and plants. At present, COFMOW is actively involved in the upgradation of manufacturing facilities at DLW and CLW to equip them to manufacture state-of-the-art locomotives of General Motors and Alstom design, respectively.

COFMOW has recently assisted Indian Railways in placing an order for 12 locomotive simulators at a total cost of Rs 980 million. These simulators will help the Railways in providing safe and efficient operation of trains to meet the demands of increasing traffic by training the staff under simulated operating conditions.

Divisions

Zonal railways work on the divisional system. Each railway is divided into three to six divisions, each division having approximately 700 to 1000 route km in its territory. There are about 67 divisions of Indian Railways. Each division works under the overall control of a divisional railway manager, who is assisted by one or two additional divisional railway managers. There are divisional officers in charge of each discipline either in the junior administrative grade or the senior scale, namely, divisional superintending engineer (DSE) or divisional engineer for civil engineering, senior divisional mechanical engineer or divisional mechanical engineer for mechanical engineering, senior divisional commercial manager or divisional commercial manager for commercial work, etc.

In the case of the engineering branch, the DSE or senior divisional engineer is normally the head of the unit in the division. Under each DSE, there are two to three divisional engineers (DENs), each in charge of approximately a 800 to 1000 integrated track km and assisted by two to three assistant engineers (AENs) in the maintenance of track and works. An AEN has about 400 integrated track km under his charge. The total number of DENs and AENs for maintenance work in Indian Railways is approximately 300 and 600, respectively. The AENs are assisted by permanent way inspectors (PWI) for maintenance of track structure. Each PWI has a jurisdiction of 50-70 route km of the track. The total number of PWIs for normal maintenance work on Indian Railways is roughly 3000.

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