Indian Railways News

Railways make private hospitals accessible to over 27 lakh employees

In a significant decision, the Indian Railways has allowed its 13 lakh serving and 14 lakh retired employees and their families to avail medical treatment for serious ailments from private hospitals — including super speciality hospitals, and nursing homes.

According to a senior official of Indian Railways, Ashwani Lohani, Chairman Railway Board (CRB), has authorised and empowered all the 71 Divisional Railway Managers (DRMs) to take decision in this matter. The move comes close on the heels of Lohani giving more financial and administrative powers at managerial level.

Until now, Railways employees had to take permission from general managers (GM) at the zonal level or from Railway board to seek treatment outside government and Railway hospitals. If the treatment required less than Rs 10 lakh, permission was given at the GM level, but in case it was above Rs 10 lakh, it required clearance from the Railway Board which led to loss of time in urgent and critical cases.

Now DRMs will be empowered to take decision at their end, which will help employees save time and get the treatment done at the earliest,” the official said.

After a crucial meeting through video conferencing with all the 17 zonal general managers two weeks ago, Lohani had issued a string of directives including this one. The other key decisions included identification of vulnerable sections on Railways lines, deep screening of vulnerable tracks, and increased patrolling of railways tracks during winters.

Deep screening is used to clean excessive rainfall and dropping of ashes and ore when ballast gets choked up and track drainage is impaired. Deep screening restores the resiliency and elasticity of the ballast bed, resulting in improved running quality of track that is less prone to accidents.
OLD RULES

Until now, Railways employees had to take permission from general managers (GM) at the zonal level or from Railway board to seek treatment outside government and Railway hospitals. If the treatment required less than Rs 10 lakh, permission was given at the GM level, but in case it was above Rs 10 lakh, it required clearance from the Railway Board which led to loss of time.

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