This Marvel Superhero Inspired Piyush Goyal To Take Responsibility

Railway Minister Piyush Goyal said he has empowered general managers to sanction out-of-turn safety-related works within financial limits set by the Finance Ministry

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This Marvel Superhero Inspired Piyush Goyal To Take Responsibility

Railway Minister Piyush Goyal said delegation of power will improve railway safety (File)

New Delhi:  "With great power comes great responsibility". These words inspired the fictional superhero Spiderman - and Railways Minister Piyush Goyal as well who, on Wednesday, said his recent move to delegate power across all levels of the rail network were inspired by a dialogue in the movie. Delegation of power would eventually lead to an improvement in the work culture of the Indian Railways, Mr Goyal told reporters in New Delhi.

"If I have to summarise, the move to delegate powers and to increase the confidence of people so much that they work properly at their level... the inspiration comes from a Spiderman movie where it is said 'with great power comes great responsibility'", the minister said.

In the last three weeks, Mr Goyal has empowered general managers to sanction out-of-turn safety-related works within financial limits set out by the Finance Ministry. Divisional regional managers have been given power to re-engage retired railway employees up to 62 years of age against vacancies.

"Our effort is to empower the railway family at all levels. I'm very confident that with this empowerment there will be far greater responsibility and sensitivity. We will certainly see a lot of improvement in the working of the railways," he said.

Enhanced power for repair of track machines has been given to field officers for faster track safety work, while junior field officers and supervisors have been tasked with multi-utility vehicles.

Officers can sanction waiting halls, platform shelter, lifts or escalators and other amenities and enter into contracts that would add to the railways' earnings. Mr Goyal said delegation of power would ensure work is done within a time-frame, especially in areas of safety and basic amenities, without the delay caused by seeking approvals.

Last month, a stampede on the stairwell of a decades-old foot overbridge in a Mumbai local train station raised some serious questions about the railway infrastructure and safety of commuters. Activists have said that the railways had been warned several times about a possible tragedy in Mumbai's Elphinstone station.

Soon after the tragedy, Mr Goyal said he had empowered officials "to spend whatever is necessary on safety".
 

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