7th Pay Commission recommendations – Major gains for Commercial Staff of Railways
There are three categories of Commercial Staff–Commercial Clerks, Enquiry Cum Reservation Clerks (ECRCs) and Ticket Checking staff (TTEs and TCs). They are responsible for commercial duties like issuing of tickets–unreserved as well as reserved, handling enquiries, checking of tickets on board trains, etc. Their present structure, along with the employee strength in each GP is as follows: –
For Commercial Clerks, the minimum educational qualification stipulated is Class X. Entry into the cadre is only at GP 2000 – 50 percent direct recruitment through RRB; 33 1/3% through LDCE from eligible erstwhile Gr.D staff of Traffic and Commercial Departments with three years of continuous service; 16 2/3% through promotion of matriculate employees in GP 1800 from eligible categories. For ECRCs, graduation is the minimum requirement, with entry GP2800. Entry in Ticket Checking staff is at GP 1900–50% direct recruitment by RRB with the minimum educational qualification of Class X and the remaining 50 percent filled by promotion–33.33% by General Selection and 16.66 percent by LDCE with minimum qualification of Class X.
11.40.66 All the three categories have demanded improvement in their pay structure. Representations have also been received to upgrade the entry level qualification of Commercial Clerks and Ticket Checking staff from the current level of Class X to graduation. It has also been stated that with the proliferation of technology for booking unreserved and reserved tickets, the requirement of Commercial Clerks and ECRCs is going down. At the same time, with an increase in the number of trains, the need for Ticket Checking staff is on the rise. Hence, it has been suggested that these three cadres should be merged.
A clear trend towards increase in internet booking is visible, so much so that internet booking has now exceeded the counter booking. With the introduction of innovative technological solutions for the unreserved sector, like the recently launched mobile application, the counter sales of unreserved tickets are also likely to go down.
Hence, the Commission finds merit in the argument that the three categories of Commercial staff should be unified into a single cadre. Accordingly, it is recommended that they should be consolidated into one cadre called Commercial and Ticketing Staff. The cadre will have the following structure after merger:-
11.40.71 With this merger, employees in GP 1900 and GP 2400 will get the benefit of upgradation. At the same time, the job content of all three categories will be enriched, as they will be able to join any of the three streams. Organizational flexibility will be enhanced as the department will have a larger pool of employees for optimal utilization, as per the requirement.