New Delhi: Claiming that recent bribery allegation in Railways is nothing new, the Federation of Railway Officers' Association has written a letter to the Cabinet Secretary alleging the Ministry "often plays by different rules or bends rules for postings of senior officers beyond recognition." The Association alleged that the Railway Ministry "often plays by different rules or bends rules for postings of senior officers beyond recognition."
The letter comes in the backdrop of the arrest of Railway Minister PK Bansal's nephew Vijay Singla on the charge of accepting Rs 90 lakh as bribe to give a plum post to suspended Railway Board member (staff) Mahesh Kumar. The Association said that senior posts of General Manager are kept vacant for months while in cases of vacancies of members in Railway Board, proposals to the Appointments Committee of Cabinet (ACC) are sent at the eleventh hour.
"A Chairman of Railway Board actually kept a member's post vacant for the entire duration of his chairmanship and held dual charge," the letter, written by Secretary General the Association Shubhranshu, said. Besides, the letter charged that "there is a complete lack of transparency in formation of the panels for promotion as GMs and others." "Needless to say, that this is not only a great blow to the personal dignity and feeling of self-worth of these officers but also creates a sense of fear and uncertainty in their minds -- a breeding ground for favouritism and corruption."
The Association said that the events that unfolded in connection with the arrest of Mahesh Kumar in the bribery case, did not surprise most Railway officers. "They (events) have deeper roots than what the media can see or the CBI can uncover," the Association said. Seeking "immediate corrective measures" to weed out corruption from Railways, the Association demanded that all proposals for filling up vacancies of GMs and members of Railway Board must be sent three months ahead of the vacancy actually occurring. A uniform rule should be laid down and followed without deviation for appointment of Chairman or members of Railway Board, the Association said.