The restructuring of Railways will end departmentalism, Railway Minister Piyush Goyal said on Tuesday, after the Union Cabinet approved the downsizing of the strength of the Railway Board from eight to five, including the chairman, and merging its different cadres and departments into a single entity.
Instead of Railway Board Members for Traffic, Rolling Stock, Traction and Engineering, the newly constituted board will have five members which will include Members for Operation, Business Development, Infrastructure and Finance among others, he said.
Indian Railways will now have only one cadre -- Indian Railway Service, instead of the current eight services for various departments, including Engineering, Traffic, Mechanical and Electrical. The Railways will also now have just two departments -- Railway Protection Force and Medical Service Department -- with all its other departments coming under one Railway Management System.
"The restructuring will ensure end of departmentalism and smooth operations," Mr Goyal said. Sources said this was done to ensure the end of turf wars among the different cadres and departments which was harming railway operations.
Restructuring of the Railway Board was also recommended by the Bibek Debroy Committee on Indian Railways in 2015. The panel said in its report that the Indian Railways' centralised structure and departmentalisation was adversely affecting the Railways' work culture and narrowing its approach to department-specific goals.