Cash Strapped Indian Railways seeks Centre’s help to pay pensions

Indian Railways is going through difficult times. Trains have not been running since the outbreak of COVID-19. The financial health of Indian Railways has deteriorated to an extent that it does not have money to pay pensions to its retired employees.

According to the sources, the Rail Ministry has written to the Ministry of Finance to seek help so that pension can be given to retired railway workers.

Indian Railways has15 lakh retired workers for which it needs to pay 53 thousand crore rupees as pension in the year 2020-21. If there is no help from the Finance Ministry, there could be a serious problem of survival for 15 lakh families of retired employees of the railways.

Serious questions have been raised on the capability of Indian Railways in terms of meeting the salary requirements of its almost 13 lakh employees.

Senior officials of Indian Railways have indicated that owing to a financial crunch, all its infrastructure projects will be affected. The red flags were raised by the railway ministry at a meeting called officials of the Prime Minister’s Office with top officials of Central ministries to take stock of the infrastructure sector.

In the Corona era, goods trains are on track, some special trains are running. Earnings are very less compared to ordinary days. If the Corona crisis lasted for a long time, it would be difficult to pay the salary to the railway workers. The Railway Ministry has also informed the Prime Minister’s Office about the economic condition of the Railways.

Shiva Gopal Mishra, General Secretary of All India Railwaymen’s Federation told that when such a situation has emerged, it is the duty and the responsibility of the Central government to intervene and provide money to Indian Railways to pay its pensioners.


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