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Q1 Tell me something about the job in Railways in India?
Q2 What is the nature of work ?
Q3.What is the aptitude needed for a job in Railways ?
Q4.What is the remuneration ?

Q1 Tell me something about the job in Railways in India?

The Indian railway system is the largest in Asia and ranks second in the world. The total route length is over 62.3 thousand kilometres. The Indian railways had a modest beginning in April 1853, when the first train journeyed from Bombay to Thane - a total of 35 kilometres. Now, as mentioned earlier, it ranks second largest in the world. The Indian railways have made a remarkable progress in attaining self-sufficiency in equipment. At the beginning of the planning era, the railways were importing 23 per cent of their equipment. Imports of railway equipment have now been brought down considerably. A reorganisation of the geographical jurisdictions of zones and divisions was done in 1996. This reorganisation was done after taking into account the quantum of workload handled by each zone, the traffic flows and easy accessibility to various activity centres. Now the Indian Railway network comprises of nine zones that are directly controlled by the Railway Board, which is at the helm of all the operations. Each zone is headed by a General Manager. The nine zones are: Central Zone with headquarters in Mumbai Eastern Zone with headquarters in Calcutta Northern Zone with headquarters in New Delhi North Eastern Zone with headquarters in Gorakhpur North-East frontier Zone with headquarters in Guwahati Southern Zone with headquarters in Chennai South-Central Zone with headquarters in Secundrabad South-Eastern Zone with headquarters in Calcutta Western Zone with headquarters in Mumbai

Q2 What is the nature of work ?

A2.The Indian Railway Traffic Service This branch of the Indian Railways looks after transportation and commercial matters pertaining to transportation. The branch is therefore divided into two divisions:

  • The commercial division: This division handles all commercial responsibilities like ticket checking, catering, administration and management of stations, reservation, announcements on the platforms, etc.
  • The operations division: This division deals with controlling movement of trains. Keeping a check on incoming and outgoing trains, detachment or attachment of wagons, etc., are the responsibilities of this division. The posts and promotions differ slightly as per the selection grade. When an officer reaches the senior administrative grade, he or she is given the post of Chief Commercial/Operations Superintendent.
  • India Railway Accounts Service This branch of the Railway Services is engaged in handling the accounting and finance operations of the Indian Railways. Working in this branch would entail dealing with financial transactions and hence a thorough knowledge of accounting procedures and related practices would prove an asset for officers who opt for this branch of the Indian Railways. An officer in the senior grade is given the charge of a zone and the post of a Financial Advisor-cum-Chief Accounts Officer. At this post, the officer carries the overall responsibility for accounts for the whole zone.
  • Indian Railway Personnel Service As the name indicates, officers in this division handle all matters related to the personnel section like selection, promotions, training, welfare activities, transfers, increments, disciplinary actions and the like.
  • Railway Protection Service/ Railway Protection Force This branch of the Indian Railway Services is entrusted with the task of maintenance of law and order on trains and on premises owned and used by the Indian Railways.
  • Railway Engineering Services This is the technical side of the Railway Services and is engaged in activities like construction and planning of railway tracks, bridges and buildings. There are branches in this division like the Indian Railway Service of Electrical Engineers and the Indian Railway Service of Mechanical Engineers.

Training for recruits for the Railway Engineering Services is provided at five centralised training institutes. For the selection of mechanical engineers, a Special Class Railway Apprenticeship Examination is held. The chosen candidates are given a four-year probationary training.

Q3.What is the aptitude needed for a job in Railways ?

A3.As in the case of any other government service, a person chosen to work in this field should have the willingness to work in a predetermined hierarchy. Unlike the private sector, hierarchy is adhered to quite closely in the government sector. As the railways are always on the move so are many of its employees. So a person should be prepared to spend time away from home and family. The railways carry an innumerable number of passengers every day. The railway employees are responsible for the safety of the passengers and their belongings. This sense of responsibility should govern each and every action of a railway employee. They should be careful that they do not compromise passenger safety in any manner. In the course of duty, railway employees will have to interact with many people, they should be flexible enough to be able to adapt to different situations and different people. But while doing that they should be governed by an inner discipline, which will ensure that they stick to their responsibility towards railway users and the department.

Q4. What is the remuneration ?

A4.The varied operations of the Indian Railways provide openings in many areas and can accommodate persons of various capabilities. However, despite having so many divisions, cadres, etc., the prospects, promotions and remuneration are at par in all the divisions. Remuneration for railway officers is fixed by the Government and follows the pattern of all other civil services. Other benefits attached to the railways are facilities like travel allowances, educational facilities, housing facilities, pension, health care, free railway passes and so on.