Lakhs face trouble in Mumbai, as students demanding job block railway track

Pauline Gross
March 21, 2018

Suburban train services on the Central Railway ground to a halt in north-central and north-eastern Mumbai for almost three and a half hours on Tuesday morning affecting 4.5 million commuters, after "300 to 400" railway apprentices resorted to a violent "rail roko" agitation between Dadar and Matunga railway stations, demanding jobs. But the authorities have reportedly stated that there is no provision of providing jobs in the Apprenticeship Act. "Indian Railways has come out with a policy to ensure a fair, transparent and competitive recruitment process that follows the law and the guidelines laid down by Hon'ble Supreme Court." added the statement.

Addressing a press conference on the issue, Railway Minister Piyush Goyal said, "Recruitment in Railways is underway at a large scale. Apprentices can apply against this notification and Special Examination will shortly be held for Apprentices who have done training in Railway Workshops under Apprentices Act", said a release issued by the Central Railway on Tuesday. The protesters were demanding assurance that they will be given jobs in the railways.

Attempting to restore normalcy, the local police resorted to a mild lathi-charge to disrupt the protestors.

Mumbai/Bhubaneswar: Protest by job aspirants are on high with railway job seekers today sitting on protest on rail tracks in Mumbai leading to cancellation of around 30 trains. "Police and railways officials engaged in talks with them, an official said".

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The Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) has deployed more buses on this route especially between Dadar and Matunga station to help the affected commuters.

One of the protesting students said, "We want full-time absorption of the successful students in the railways, and scrapping of the GM quota". A student who was the part of the Protest said,"There has been no recruitment since last four years". The recruitment drive will end on March 31. Over 10 students have committed suicide.

They claimed they had taken up their demands right upto the Railway Minister Piyush Goyal who met them but there was no progress in the matter.

Other reports by GizPress

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