Services on the Central Railway line in Mumbai have been badly hit on Tuesday morning after job-seekers protested on the tracks about several issues related to railway recruitment.
The protest by All India Railway Act Apprenticeship students are being held between Matunga and Dadar on Central line, giving a tough time to commuters going to work.
Protestors from across the country are participating in the protest demanding jobs in railways. They are not only halting local trains but long route trains too, forcing commuters to take a walk to the nearby railway stations. Protestors allege that although they met Railway Minister Piyush Goyal, their demands were not redressed.
The protestors who have passed the Railway act apprentice exam are demanding a removal of 20% upper limit in the hiring of candidates for Railway jobs.
They claim that until now everyone used to be included in Group D but now they have fixed at 20% quota which was mainly for the new lot. The protesters claimed that they went on a protest at Delhi and Bhusawal, previously.
"We are running Up locals that are terminating at Kurla and returning as Special in Down direction," said Sunil Udasi, Chief PRO Central Railway.
Reacting to the protest, the Central Railway said, "There is no provision of giving jobs to the apprentices as per the Apprentice Act. They are given only training of a specified period to improve their skills and experience of having worked in the field. However, Ministry of Railways have taken a decision and reserved 20% of the seats filled through direct recruitment."
"Stating that the notification is already issued with the last date of submitting an application as 31.3.2018. 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." Central Railway said.
Many stations on the CR - that ferries 42 lakh people daily - were overcrowded. People got down at Kurla and changed it on the Harbour line.
Meanwhile, the BEST has announced special buses from Dadar and Matunga station.
The Railways has set a target of training 30,000 apprentices at its 17 zonal and seven production units in 2018-19, as part of the government's Skill India initiative.
Apprentice training comprises basic and on-the-job training/practical training. Basic training is an essential component of apprenticeship for those who have not undergone any institutional training before taking up on-the-job and practical training.