THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The KSRTC has booted out conductors who are working as clerks in its headquarters to their home depots as part of restructuring exercise. Conductors in EDPC, PBX and traffic sections are the affected. They would be replaced with ministerial staff of selection grade assistants and junior assistants. The KSRTC management termed it an administrative measure to make efficient use of man power.
An order issued by the Executive Director (administration) to this effect justifies the rejig stating that some of the posts do not have enough work for a single person. Duties hitherto carried out by two officers have been assigned to a single person. Duties of superintendents too have been increased and the working hours of clerical staff have been increased by an hour. Ministerial staff working in the headquarters have been redeployed to this effect.
To maintain financial discipline, sections for purchase bill, bill drawing and payment cell have been merged to form a single payment cell with six employees. “Employees, especially the politically strong conductors, have misused the ‘other duty’ system to work in office as clerks and stay off from the operations duty. There are over 200 such posts in headquarters,” said a KSRTC officer. According to him, there were mechanical engineers, station masters and inspectors who continue to draw a higher salary while working in posts meant for clerks in junior grade. The absence of senior officers in home depot not only affected the operation but also created a premature promotion system that turned out to be a huge financial burden for the KSRTC, he said.
But trade unions have fiercely protected the ‘other duty’ pattern. Former CMDs Sanjeeb Kumar Patjoshi and M G Rajamanickam faced the pressure and eventual removal from the posts when they went ahead with the human resource reforms. The latter even tried to displace 300 employees who misused the other duty system. The government and the lenders have asked the KSRTC to restructure itself for getting revival assistance.