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Friday, November 9, 2012

Crumbling Verticals!

The battle for supremacy amongst various services of the railways witnesses new lows with each passing day. That such battles have no relevance for the well being of the organization or otherwise is fairly evident, yet issues and projects are regularly conceived and launched for petty personal as well as departmental gains.  Often the gains though not for the organization are immense as appears to be the case with new found penchant for train sets to be procured at costs, considered exorbitant by even western standards. Now for some time there shall be territorial disputes between those who espouse the cause of train sets for personal as well as departmental gains and those whose territory appears to be shrinking. The saga of growth and development of the railway system in our nation is heavily interspersed with such internal battles regularly played on different turfs by different groups, generally for unethical causes or causes beyond comprehension.

The nine verticals of the railways are the bane of this organization that once had a great affixed to its name. Till the railways crossed the two hundred million mark in the early eighties, the departmental verticals suited the organization, perhaps because of the easily manageable load both in terms of freight as well as the passenger traffic. During the following three decades, the load went up by almost six times, without any substantial inputs in terms of infrastructure or the human resource. This led to the ongoing mad scramble for scarce resources with attendant ramifications. Simultaneously the rapid rise in the number of officers led to diminishing of powers, authority and territory with consequent reduction in self esteem and pride. Lack of self esteem and pride in oneself is the reason behind the undignified conduct of the officer class in general in dealing with their subordinates that one is witness to day in and day out. Another glaring symptom is the crumbling infrastructure and the pride that once was the hallmark of a railwaymen.  

A vicious bind is what we find ourselves in now. The archaic structure throws up mediocrity for whom even the thought of structural or systemic changes is beyond comprehension. The mediocrity at apex levels taking solace in the routine day to day operations is the culprit behind the mess we find ourselves in at present.

Abhimanyu broke the chakravyuh of the kauravas during Mahabharata. A modern day Abhimanyu will lead this organization out of the morass that it finds itself in despite being in monopoly in a sellers market.

With hope we live!


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