The Indian Railways will recover ₹75 per month from the risk allowance paid to thousands of employees engaged in 12 categories of hazardous work, including safaiwalas working in underground drains/sewers, across the country for over three years.
In 2018, the Ministry of Railways revised the rate of risk allowance from ₹60 to ₹135 per month for the 12 categories of staff deployed in hazardous work, with effect from July 1, 2017. The order was issued on the basis of a Ministry of Finance communication conveying the Union government’s decision on the Seventh Central Pay Commission’s recommendations.
More than three years later, the Railway Board, in a recent order, referred to a letter from the Department of Personnel & Training and said the risk allowance payable from July 1, 2017 to November 2, 2020 would be payable at the rate of ₹60 per month, as per the Sixth Central Pay Commission’s norms. Similarly, under the Seventh Central Pay Commission’s norms, it would be payable at the rate of ₹90 per month from November 3, 2020. All Zonal Railways, production units, workshops and other railway establishments were told to recover the difference amount of risk allowance at the rate of ₹75 per month paid from July 1, 2017 to November 2, 2020, and the excess risk allowance of ₹45 paid every month from November 3, 2020 to the date of recovery.
The Railways has categorised a few jobs as eligible for payment of risk allowance. The list includes, among others, safaiwalas working in underground drains/sewers, manholes and sewage treatment plants; those engaged in the use of electrolytes, chrome plating, galvanising tanks and effluent treatment plants, and in manufacturing insulation components for hazardous chemicals; x-ray attendants and malaria khalasis spraying pesticides and handling acids and anti-larval drugs.