Policy on ‘Drunkenness on Duty.’ – NFIR
Dated: 12th July 2017
The Secretary (E),
Sub: Policy on ‘Drunkenness on Duty.’
Ref: (i) Railway Board’s letter No. 2009/Safety(DM)/6/12/Committee dated 20/052014 addressed to the Federation.
(ii) NFIR’s letter No. IV/Safety/A dated 09/06/2014 to Railway Board.
Responding to the proposal received from Railway Board vide letter dated 20/05/2015, detailed comments were furnished by the Federation vide its letter dated 09/06/2014 to facilitate the Railway Board to hold discussions while framing policy on the subject. Federation is however disappointed to note that though a period of nearly three years passed, no discussions have been held to decide policy for issuing instructions to the Zonal Railways.
2.Reports received by the Federation reveal that the Zonal Railways have resorted to arbitrary decisions ignoring extant instructions of Railway Board as listed below:-
(i) whenever LP/ALP/LP (Shunting)/Guard fails the breathalyzer test, they are not booked for a train, though they pass in the 2nd breathalyzer test,
(ii) Such of these staff are marked in “Non Run” casualty in CMS under option “Inquiry.” After inquiry, as per the instructions of Power Officer/Traffic (Optg) • Officer (in case of Guard) they are to be booked on line and
(iii) in case LP/ALP/LP (Shunting)/Guard fail in 2nd test also, D&AR action being initiated.
3.Complaints received from the Running staff reveal that the Breathalyzers used for conducting test in the Divisions are quite old and not working properly, consequently do not give correct results. Also 2nd Breathalyzer test is not conducted on the staff which results into wrong assessment and unjustified disciplinary proceedings and imposition of penalties on the staff though they deserved to be let off.
4.On S.C. Rly, during sign “ON”, if staff found positive on 1st BA test, he is being allowed for second BA test on spare Breathalyzer and when found negative, he is not being allowed to work train. These instructions are nowhere available but being followed on S.C. Rly.
5.The Railway Board is silent (RB letter Dt.27.11.2001) on vital issues that, if staff found positive, whether he should be checked on spare BA equipment or not? and on second check, if found negative whether he shall be allowed to work train or not ?. Since Railway Board’s guidelines are not specific, the Zonal Railways are following their own practices during BA test and resorting action under D&A rules on running staff.
Federation has also come to know that the Railway Board vide letter No. 2009/Safety (DM)/6/12/Committee dated 18/04/017 have clarified to the South Central Railway that the policy on ‘Drunkenness on Duty’ issued vide Board’s letter dated 27/11/2001 is applicable at present. Federation brings to Board’s notice that these policy instructions are not being adhered to, by the Zonal Railways (as mentioned in para 2 above).
6.Federation also states that the instructions on the subject provide for “State of Art Breathalyzer equipment capable of giving exact level of Alcohol content in the blood including print outs to be introduced. These breathalyzers should necessarily have the memory function so that in case of suspect a print out can be taken.” Unfortunately, these instructions are not being followed on Zonal Railways, consequently Running staff are being victimized un-necessarily.
7.NFIR, therefore, requests the Railway Board to kindly intervene and issue suitable clarification to the Zonal Railways to save staff from hardships. A copy of the instructions issued may be endorsed to the Federation. Federation also requests the Board to kindly reply indicating the action on Federation’s letter dated 09/06/2014.
(Dr. M. Raghavaiah)
Source : NFIR