IES in Indian Railways: An Electrical Engineer’s experience


Hello Readers,
In this article i present to you the experience of working in Indian Railways of an IES officer from electrical engineering. We met at foundation course about which i have already detailed here. At NAIR, i requested him to write an article for IES aspirants from electrical engineering, which would give them insights of life in Indian Railways.This article has been written by Deep Karan Singh. He has detailed about his journey so far , after joining railways on 15th December 2014. He has tried to portray a balance picture of working in his department. I hope this article helps you in giving  inside look of the system where you dream to be.


 

My initial experience of working in Indian Railways

It was 28th of February of 2014. The final result of the Engineering Services Exam-2013 was out and I had secured AIR-22. Having a look at the number of vacancies in IRSEE, I was sure to get Railways if my medical goes well. The medical schedule was out by the end of March. Till that year, Medical exam was conducted by Railways at its hospitals. I was called to Mumbai in April for the medical exam even though it was not among the three choices I had given. The medical result was out by October and the offer of appointment was issued on 31st of October. I received it two days later with a First Class Duty Pass mentioning Nasik as the place of reporting. The Chuk-Chuk Gaadi was calling me and asking me to help it serve the public. The joining was on 15th of December and ten days prior to it, I received a welcome letter from the CTI (Centralized Training Institute) at which I had to report i.e. Indian Railways Institute of Electrical Engineering, Nasik (IRIEEN).

IRIEEN

IMG_20150622_111410810_HDR

I reached Nasik on 14th of December. The CTI bus was on duty to receive the about-to-join Probationary Officers (POs) from the station and take them to the institute. The CTI is at a distance of 4 kms from the station and is situated on the outskirts of the main city. It is spread over a vast area equipped with all facilities except the Khajana i.e. ATM (Any Time Money). There is the main building, the two hostels for the POs and senior officers, the ORH (Officer Rest House), the health unit and almost all the sporting facilities. I heard that Railways gives huge importance to sports and had observed it first hand. The culture of sports is imbibed in Railway Officers from the start. The institute has a very big ground, swimming pool, gymnasium, badminton court, tennis court, basketball court, volleyball court, etc. It also has a recreation room where indoor sports like snooker, carrom, table tennis are available and a reading room. There is a big library in the main building where all the books related to Electrical Department of Indian Railways and also other books of general nature are available. The hostel area also has a mess to cater to the diverse tastes of the Officers who had come from all over the country.

IMG_20150622_111552706

After a week of the joining, which was for the joining formalities, the first part of our training i.e. Phase-1 was started. It was a eight-week classroom program in which the POs were exposed to various facets of Electrical Department of Indian Railways. The classes at IRIEEN were conducted from Monday to Friday.  A total of seven tests were conducted to evaluate the POs in the latter half of the program. The tests were not of serious nature and all the officers pass them easily but these should not be taken for granted. The POs also went for practical training to Mumbai during the course but the real field training was yet to come.

IMG_20150622_111559935

Parties, functions and get-togethers are a regular affair in the Indian Railways. We were lucky to witness the 25th anniversary of service of 1987 batch of IRSEE in Indian Railways. Senior officers interacted and shared their experience with the new POs. All of them told very nice things and future prospects in Indian Railways and we were delighted to hear such unprecedented experiences. A cultural program was conducted during our stay in which all the POs performed and brought out their hidden talents. On the occasion of Republic Day, the Director of IRIEEN unfurled the Tiranga and the National Anthem was sung. Refreshment was also distributed to all the officers.

IMG_20150622_183651414

After the conclusion of Phase-1 on 13th of February, all the POs were sent for field training for 8 days to different places in groups of 4-5 and were told to report on 26th of February for Group ‘A’ Foundation Course  at National Academy of Indian Railways (NAIR) in Vadodara.

First Field Training

There was 8 working days gap between the completion of Phase-1 at IRIEEN and the start of the Foundation Course at NAIR. All the POs were allotted field training for this period to different places. I, along with three more POs, went to Bilaspur. We were given an assignment which also included foot plating. We went to Korba from Bilaspur, travelled in the locomotive of a goods train and learned new things from the inspector who was travelling with us to facilitate out training. Different types of signals, warning boards were coming enroute our journey and the inspector was clearing all our doubts. It was an unprecedented experience and we learned a lot of new things. At Korba, we went to coal mines of Coal India Ltd and observed the things which were relevant to us. It was a life changing experience and I knew more better experiences are yet to come.

NAIR

NAIR is the alma mater of all Railway Officers and POs from various services of the Railways reported to attend the ten-week program. The POs were from IRSEE,IRSE,IRSSE,IRSME,IRAS,IRPS. The probationers from different services were made room partners for better inter-departmental interaction. Morning PT was conducted at the academy to inculcate the virtues of being fit. The other side of the PT was the penalty of losing a CL for missing four PTs. Here also the EXAM monster was not ready to leave few of the POs (including me) who did not want to study. A total of 13 exams were conducted during the course covering all the departments of Indian Railways like Commercial, Law, Operations, Stores, Electrical, Civil, etc. The exams were finished a week before the completion of the course which was to bring down the curtains on 1st of May.

A one-week study tour was also organized during the Foundation Program and I was one of the lucky ones to go to Chandigarh, Shimla and Amritsar. The toy train journey from Kalka to Shimla was thoroughly enjoyed by all the POs and the visit to Attari-Wagah border filled the Railway Officers with national pride.

Field Training

After NAIR, all IRSEE probationers will be going for field training in groups of 5 to 6. The Railways are spread all over the country with its presence increasing in the North East and giving an ample amount of opportunity for the newly recruited Officers to visit new places and learn the nuances of Railway working. The POs will also be visiting the Production Units of Railways like RCF, ICF, CLW, DLW, etc. All the POs are scheduled to meet at various CTIs for appreciation courses and training review at Nasik.

Future

The Phase-2 will be conducted at Nasik at the end of the one and half year of training, followed by the posting exam and passing out parade.

There have been talks going around in the Railway corridors that the POs will be sent for training abroad, probably to Japan and Australia, but nothing has been finalized yet.

This is my four and half months of experience in Indian Railways and I hope that some nice things are in store for me.

 

Written by

Deep Karan Singh,

With vital inputs from Shailendra Maurya

IRSEE(P)-2013

Provision and Methodology for transfer of Service Agreement Bond


Hello Readers,
It is the follow up of prvious article in which Ayush Srivastava did a comparative analysis of his working experience at IOCL and subsequestly at railways. In this article he explains provision and methodology for transfer of Service Agreement Bond while switching from a PSU to Indian Railways through ESE. He can be reached at  Ayush Srivastava.


Hello Folks!!!

This is Ayush Srivastava, IRSE Probationer, 2013-exam batch. I find pleasure in introducing myself, briefly as follows:

Graduation: B Tech (Civil) from Maulana Azad National Institute of Technology, Bhopal.

Graduating year: 2013           Graduating GGPA: 9.41/10.00            PG: None

GATE-2013 AIR: 84                Engineering Services Exam-2013 AIR: 23

Campus Selection: IOCL          GATE Recruitment: IOCL

I have decided to talk about the transfer of bond, specifically from IOCL to railways, as I was involved with the same two organizations and since it is more of a legal kind of thing, I cannot and will not misguide you by writing anything and everything here in a generalized manner. I am sorry if this doesn’t concern you.
First of all, please be aware that there is a Department of Public Enterprise (DPE) guideline referred as DPE O.M. No. 15(2)/2003-DPE(GM)/GL-57 dated 29th July, 2004 which clearly states that “The bond executed by employees of the Public Enterprises, who have received scientific/technical training at the cost of Public Enterprises and have applied through proper channel during the currency of the bond join Central Govt./State Govt. services or take up employment under quasi-government organizations or any other public enterprise either on the basis of competition examinations/tests/interviews organized by those organizations or the Union Public Service Commission should not be enforced subject to the condition that a fresh bond is taken to ensure that the employee serves the new employer for the balance of the original bond period.” The above guideline can be checked hereunder: http://www.dpe.nic.in/important_links/dpe_guidelines/personnel_policies/glch2dindex/glch02d31 .

You should apply through proper channel for ESE (which you would) and intimate in prior, to your controlling authority at your current job in the concerned PSU, while applying for the ESE (at the beginning while filling up the form and not wait till you clear the written exam). Many times, the HR personnel in the PSUs take it as leverage for not transferring your bond, in case you have not intimated through proper channel while applying for the ESE.

An important point to understand here is that in case you are a fresh pass-out and have applied and appeared in the written exam of ESE prior to joining, then off-course applying through so called proper channel doesn’t apply, as you were not a part of your current PSU, while you applied and wrote for the exam. However, it is suggested to intimate in writing, to your boss, that you have applied and written the ESE of the concerned year, which was held prior to your date of joining your current job. This should be done as soon as you join at your first permanent place of posting.

As stated in the above DPE guideline, you need to execute a fresh bond with your current organization for the balance of original period and amount. This bond shall clearly state that you shall serve the department allotted to you through ESE (in our case Railways) for the balance of the original period. In the event of failure to do so on your part, your new department shall realize the proportionate money of the balance bond amount, from you and return to the PSU, with whom you have originally executed the bond. The new department (in my case the railways) shall be custodian of this bond.

Problems Faced:

  1. No official format of fresh bond available, either with IOCL or Railways, which can be used directly.
  2. Convincing the HR personnel of IOCL regarding such a provision of bond transfer. (Though it was not an issue as IOCL has some very good and helpful HR people).
  3. The mechanism of paper work to facilitate the transfer of bond.

 

The above process of bond transfer was challenge for me, and sometimes I thought of giving up. However, fortunately, I came out with flying colors and was the first ex-iocian of ESE-2013 batch (including all services in railways) to get my bond transferred successfully from IOCL to Indian Railways.

First of all, since there is no official format of fresh bond available, either with IOCL or Railways, which can be used directly, you will have to prepare a format on your own and get it verified from HR people in IOCL, well in advance.( If IOCL is OK with the format, then railways have no problem). To prepare the format you may take help form NTPC guys, who have a format of their own, as far as I know. You should pressurize the HR department of your PSU (IOCL in this case) to provide this agreement format. However, at last, if you have to prepare it yourself, you may take the help of a professional lawyer to prepare such a format, or search the internet, if you are lucky. It is quite possible, that seeing the rising number of requests for bond transfer every year, PSUs including IOCL, by now, might have officially prepared such formats for transfer of service bonds from their organization to some other state/central department and you may get saved from this mind-wrecking task.

Regarding having a strong stand for enabling your bond transfer, you should let your HR know about the DPE guidelines, so that you are not denied of your right. As far as railways is concerned, I know and so can say that it is always a plus point, because it is clearly written in the appointment letter, that the railways accept the transfer of bond from PSUs/Central  departments. You should submit a Xerox of your railway appointment letter with your resignation letter to IOCL, in which it should be clearly stated that you want your bond to be transferred as per the relevant DPE guideline.

Once a fresh agreement has been typed on the bond paper, it should be duly signed by you and your surety and then countersigned by the competent personnel in IOCL or accompanied by a letter from IOCL stating the said bond is accepted by them. This letter along with the original bond paper shall be submitted at IRICEN, Pune at the time of joining. The railways shall keep the original bond paper, and send a copy of the same, to IOCL, with a covering letter stating the acceptance of the bond on the part of railways. This marks the completion of the bond transfer process.

P.S.: As per prevailing culture, you will be given a provisional release order from IOCL, on the basis of which you can join the railways. (Without provisional release order you will not be allowed to join).  Once the bond process is completed, IOCL shall dispatch your formal release order to railways, under intimation to you.

I think that’s all of what I am capable of sharing with you. Study hard, study smart and always be clear with your priorities. A life full of dilemmas is like having a bowl full of butter chicken in front of you when you know you can’t eat it because of an upset digestion.

Wishing you all a happy reading and a successful life ahead!!!!!!!

AYUSH SRIVASTAVA

IRSE (P), 2013.

First week at Indian Railway Institute of Civil Engineering


IRICEN stands for Indian Railway Institute Of Civil Engineering. It is a centralised training institute for IRSE probationers. It is located in Pune city in the posh locality of Koregaon Park. It was started in 1959 as Permanent Way Training School for Civil Engineers. After clearing IES , civil engineers those who get railways start their journey from here only. This institute is our headquarter for next three years of probation.

IRICEN Building
IRICEN Building

Our batch of IRSE probationers were asked to report the IRICEN on 15 December 2014. Accordingly, we made our reservations for Pune.  As I mentioned previously that we were given first class pass to travel to Pune for joining so we didn’t face any major difficulty. Once we reached Pune railway station there was reception desk just outside the station for welcoming us. Staff from IRICEN had arranged vehicles to transport us to IRICEN hostel which is just adjoining to main IRICEN building. Once inside, we were allotted our hostel rooms.When i started moving to my room, one boy took my luggage and lead me towards the room but then i insisted that i will carry the luggage on my own. Actually he symbolized the failure of Indian State in terms of employment and education. He is in no way inferior or lesser being than i am but our society is like such where there is less to envy and more to pity.

IRICEN hostel is the best among all centralized training institutes hostels of Indian Railway. When I opened my room it was equipped with all the facilities.Every thing was in its place just waiting for us. Internet speed is just amazing, it has made everyone crazy here. Railway provides services which are generally not available elsewhere.

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There afterwards we proceeded for the dinner. Let me tell you that mess arrangements are also no ordinary here. Our dining area is big hall where around 150 people can eat at time. Everything was on its place. We just sat there and enjoyed our meal. There are catering staff which take care of your all the needs. Food is of very good quality. You will fall in love with dining facilities here. It is completely different from what you will find in your college mess. So if you want to be here than start studying now.

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Goutam Rahul Roy , IES
Goutam Rahul Roy , IES

IMG_20141214_205210908

 

In the first week, we have completed all our joining formalities. Were were also given introduction on important railway works. We were told about organisation and how to behave as an officer. One very special thing was given to us which is only a matter of privilege. Look below.

IMG_20141218_121012704

 

The name says it all. This is a first class duty pass given to all the IRSE probationer. Through this we are entitled to travel from anywhere to anywhere in India on duty. We are also entitled to travel in Shatabadi and Rajdhani trains. We also get 6 sets of privilege pass and privilege ticket order which can be used for families. Let me tell you that I feel proud while carrying duty pass as its the sign if becoming an IES officer. We also been instructed not to misuse our official privileges. We can’t do anything which will be regarded as ‘ unbecoming of an officer’. We were also given lessons on manners,etiquette and ceremonies.

It has just been one week at IRICEN. Half of the batch has been sent to NAIR Vadodra and rest of them have been sent to field training. I was overwhelmed by the experience here which has been fulfilling till now,we have to return again here for next phase of training. This is the place where we will be incubated as officer of Indian Railways.

NAIR Batch
NAIR Batch

I am now the part of this mammoth organisation which has been serving the nation through its ups and downs. The feeling i get here is of unseen potential which lies ahead. Next three years represents a big learning opportunity and it will be my constant endeavor to not to waste this wonderful opportunity. Railway provides everything even beyond your expectations ,you just have to give your soul to it and you will enjoy being here. Let me warn you that life in Railways is not easy from any point of view. Challenges are as great as rewards, so if you want to thoroughly enjoy your life then you are welcome.

 

Promotion and Service in Indian Railways


Are promotions slow in IES ?

On paper according to railway policy and central govt. Policy your promotions are time bound i.e. the pay grade will be given to you timely, e.g. when you get JG(Junior Grade), SS(Senior Scale), JAG(Junior Administrative Grade), Selection Grade,SAG(Senior Administrative Grade), HAG(Higher Administrative grade)…etc. will all depend on your no. of years of service since joining (and also your annual performance report APR, which is awarded liberally by your senior unless you have punched him right on face!!!).

But your promotion from one post to higher post i.e. from Den(Divisional Engineer) to Sr.Den, etc. will depend on the vacancy. And why there is a dearth of vacancies at higher post ? To understand this, you have to understand the hierarchical system in railways. We won’t go into details like railway is a 3 tier system, etc., etc. You just need to know like any other hierarchical system this is also a pyramid. Less posts at higher level. As the bigger and bigger batches are recruited every year in railways, one has to wait for the senior to move up to get into a higher chair even if he/she has qualified the grade criteria for the higher post.

This is termed as stagnation in promotion as one is sitting on the same chair like ADEN,even if he has got senior scale (SS).
The reason I said slow and quick are relative terms because we tend to compare present scenario with the previous where recruited batches were small and obviously they had got their promotions as soon as they were eligible by min. Grade criteria.

But is there something to worry?

Well you don’t have to worry from salary (and other perks) point of view because your band pay (and other perks) depends on your grade pay.
But only thing is you may get frustrated while working on same post for years..this is the only problem.

PS: A natural question arises after reading above is why recruitment is so much, that it leads to sluggish promotions?
For now I leave this for readers to think on. There is an answer to everything.

Do we really serve India in Railways?

Are we really serving India in railways? For this you have to define what do you mean by serving India. Do you think working in army, or in police, or in administrative services, or in some NGO is the only way to serve our nation.
Well my dear friend, this is the glorification services on the name of serving India. Have you ever seen any of these working without salary. If they are doing so can they sustain their lives. No they won’t be able to live a day longer to “serve India”.

In railways we are also getting paid for our services, hence like all these services, serving India. In-fact any person employed in government or privately is serving India if he/she remembers to do his/her job honestly.

But if you like me to speak like a politician, here are the facts :

  • By transporting freight of almost everything like coal, we are providing a means for the growth of country.
  • By transporting passengers (in-spite of loss in this business as a whole) we are fulfilling nations need to move.
  • By laying tracks to disconnected areas, we are connecting a world lost in our country (in-spite of negative rate of return).
  • By building bridges we are making lives easier for our fellow countrymen
  • By trying to built bullet train under new Government, we are showcasing our advanced technological abilities.
  • We develop new station and bring out new locomotives for this big organization.
  • We handle huge volume of passengers so that they can reach their destinations safely
  • We are managing one of the biggest rail networks of the world and we are proud of it.

The list is endless by which one can prove railways is serving India (but not free, because there is nothing like free service).

Ravinder
IRSE 2012

Study leave in Indian Railways


Granted to a Railway employee for:

1. Higher studies or undergoing training in professional and technical subjects having a direct and close connection with the sphere of his duties.
2. A study capable of widening one’s mind in manner likely to improve his abilities as a Railway employee.
3. Studies connected with the framework or background of public administration.
4. Advantageous to the Government from the point of view of public interest and related to his duties of Railway employee.
5. Not granted for academic/literary pursuits.
6. Should be liberally granted particularly to scientific, technical and administrative staff. For study outside India, permission of Finance Ministry should be obtained.
7.  Study leave out of India shall not be granted for the prosecution of studies in subjects for which adequate facilities exist in India or under any of the Schemes administered by the Department of Economic Affairs of the Ministry of Finance or by the Ministry of Education.

Period of leave:-

  • Max period of 24 months in the entire service of a Railway employee and upto 12 months at a time.
  • Combined with other type of leave with leave salary (LAP/LHAP) excluding extra ordinary leave(ExL) leave can be permitted upto 36 months for a Railway employee doing PhD.

Salary:-
Leave salary during study leave. —(1) During study leave availed outside India a Railway  servant  shall  draw  leave  salary  equal  to  the  pay  (without  allowances  other  than  dearness allowance)that the Railway servant drew while on duty immediately before proceeding on such leave, in addition to the study allowance admissible in accordance with the provisions of rules 8 to 10 .

(2) (a)   During study leaves availed in India, a Railway servant shall draw leave salary equal
to the pay (without allowances other than dearness allowances) that the Railway servant drew while
on duty immediately before proceeding on such leave.

(b)  Payment  of  leave  salary  at  full  rate  under  clause  (a)  shall  be  subject  to  furnishing  of  a
certificate by the Railway servant to the effect that he is not in receipt of any scholarship, stipend or
remuneration in respect of any part-time employment.

(c )  The amount, if any received by a Railway servant during the period of study leave as
scholarship or stipend or remuneration in respect of any part time employment as envisaged in sub-
rule (2) of rule 8, shall be adjusted against the leave salary payable under this sub-rule subject to the
condition that the leave salary shall not be reduced to an amount less than that payable as leave salary
during half pay leave.

(d)  No study allowance shall be paid during study leave for courses of study in India.

Conditions:-

  • The employee has to execute a bond specifying that he wont resign / retire for 3 years after the expiry of leave failing which he will have to refund all the leave salary and other expenses incurred by Railways.
  • Not granted to those with less than 5 years of service and due to retire within 3 years after the expiry of leave.
  • Study leave by Railway servants who resign / retire / quit service without returning to duty or quit service within a period of three years after return to duty / who fail to complete the course of study and are thus unable to furnish the certificate as required in the Study Leave Rules, shall be converted into regular leave standing at his credit on the date on which the study leave commenced.
  • Any regular leave taken in continuation of study leave being suitably adjusted for the purpose and the balance of the period of study leave, if any, which cannot be so converted, treated as extraordinary leave.
  • The balance of study leave thus converted into extraordinary leave due to deficiency in the leave account shall not be counted as qualifying service for pensionary benefits.
  • Period spent on study leave shall be counted for earning both Leave on Average Pay and also Leave on Half Average Pay from 04/01/2011[1](before 04/01/2011 – not for earning leave other than LHAP).

Service/ Seniority

  • Period will count as service for promotion.

Sanctioning authority

  • Gazetted Officers – Railway Board
  • Non-Gazetted Officers – GM

Reference http://www.indianrailways.gov.in/railwayboard/uploads/directorate/establishment/downloads/APPENDIX_5-old.PDF

Why Railways is the best option in IES


Following answer has been given on Quora By Sourabh Anand IES 2013 rank 3

If you’re looking for facilities –
1. Duty pass free (2nd AC)( you can go any where with your spouse and children)
2. Big bungalow with 3-4 servants
3. Power (i.e. Staff to Officer Ratio )- 500-600 people will be reporting you in first posting.
4. Dedicated vehicle for you (after 2-3 years)
5. Social status (of class-1 officer gazetted officer)
6. You can become DRM After 25 years and after GM 30 years
7. Very fast promotions.

If you’re looking for long-term –
1. Job satisfaction.
2. Genuine opportunity to serve the nation.
3. To be part of such a large system which people from outside wonders how it works.
4. There is no field of Engineering or Management which get untouched providing you an opportunity to excel in the field of your liking and competency
5. Respect in the society and friend circle.  You can help in getting emergency quota.
6. Support of very large fraternity and network of Railway man ready to support you and your family in adverse situation.
7. You and your family feel homely and safe  in any part of the country in Railway area.
8. You have an opportunity for higher studies like a post graduation/PhD in India or abroad.
9. Even though you are tied with one organization for the entire 30-38 years of active career still you can find your boss and place of posting changing almost every two years.

Detailed Answer

Let’s compare Railways Services for Electronics Engineers (IRSSE) to the core service of ECE i.e ITS (Indian Telecommunication Services) in order to get an idea why Railways are preferred –

1. Locations: IRSSE training is at IRISET, Hyderabad. After training, posting for IRSSE is mostly in divisional HQs. Yes, some divisions are in small places (cities & at the very least, district HQs). Zonal HQs are mostly located in big cities.

2.Nature of job: Most key posts in DoT are manned by the IAS and CSS. ITS officers will handle all the technical work, but most administrative posts will be held by the IAS (Even the Secy  and Joint Secy DoT are from IAS). IRSSE has its fair share of Admin posts as well, as there is no IAS to throw a spanner in the works. Post of Member Signaling hasn’t been sanctioned yet, but Addl Member post has been upgraded to Special Secretary GoI status. Also, deputation opportunities are aplenty for the IRSSE. In railway PSUs, even 1994 or ’95 batch officers are being posted as GMs.

3.Working days: ITS has 5 working days. IRSSE has 6 (and it is 24X7 work). But then, even the IAS/IPS work 6 days a week, and are on duty 24*7! It only indicates the greater responsibility and powers held by them. Same holds true for IRSSE. And this is mostly in divisions, where you are dealing with direct train ops. If that’s too hectic, you have the option of joining Zonal HQs, where most of the work is administrative in nature and 5-day weeks are a reality.

4. Reputation: Reputation is more or less the same I suppose.

5.Facilities: Now comes the good part. Railway Officers’ Enclaves are the envy of all services (including IAS/IPS!). All divisions and HQ have good officers’ clubs, which have swimming pools, pool tables, AC gyms, mini theaters etc. Parties are held every 2 weeks or so. Most divisions and zonal hqrs (yes, even the big metros) have bungalows for officers in SAG and above. JAG and SG officers don’t get bungalows only in a handful of cities, but you get large apartments (3 or 4BHK, >2000sqft) in prime locations in cities. ITS and other central services have to make-do with the ramshackle CPWD quarters under the CGPRA (which are mostly occupied). You will get HRA, but that is mostly insufficient to get good accommodation. Also, you will have lots of servant under you in IRSSE (not less than 2 or 3). You can never dream of free servants in ITS. And to mention of rail passes, officers in SAG and above also get saloons (2 BR, with kitchen and attendant) for official travel within the zone! SAG officers will have to share one, and HAG officers get individual ones.
Also, during training you will get pretty good rooms at IRISET, Hyderabad and RSC, Baroda. Both institutes have excellent clubs for officers.

6.Future prospects: It is a well-known fact that the ITS has become top-heavy with severe stagnation in JAG and above. ITS association’s demand for cadre review has also been shot-down many times by the IAS. 1987 batch of IRSSE already empaneled as Joint Secretary to Govt of India, as compared to 1982 batch of ITS.2000 batch of ITS is yet to get JAG, as compared to 2008 batch of IRSSE already in JAG on ad hoc basis. Promotions in railways are definitely faster than ITS. You can paint the rest of the picture yourself.

JAG = Junior Administrative Grade
SG = Selection Grade
SAG = Senior Administrative Grade
HAG = Higher Administrative Grade

Experiences of Alind Shekhar (2010 batch IES officer) about Railway Services (It was posted in 2012 on Orkut)

(Although it does not directly answer the question, it tells you a lot about facilities provided by Railways. So, I think it’s worth reading.)

“I worked in NTPC for more than a year, and I’m in railways for the last 7 months.

My salary in NTPC was 46k in hand. Right now my salary here is approx 30k in hand. After posting it will be around 40-42k in hand.
But still I do not regret joining railways due to the following reasons –

1) Staff : Officer ratio matters a lot when u talk of power. In NTPC, it must have been around 1:5 or 1:10. We were more officers than staff and this is generally the case when NTPC is recruiting 700-800 engineers every year.
In railways this ratio is around 800:1 in your first posting.

2) In NTPC, there were more than 30 guys at my rank in my plant. In railway I will be the only one in my sub-division (maybe a traffic officer as well if posting is in goods traffic dominating area). Thats a huge difference!

3) In NTPC, I didn’t have any authority of my own. The contractors will always go to the manager/DGM for petite matters and I used to feel humiliated as to what my role in the company was.
This is not the case in railway. You get to decide what is to be done in your jurisdiction. Sr DENs are virtually non-approachable to contractors. And this gives you the power!! There goes a saying that”AEN ke section me patta bhi usse puchche bina nahi hilta” [Roughly translates to – In the section of AEN (Assistant Engineer), he is final authority] I think this explains a lot.

4)There is not much difference in responsibility in PSU with the promotion. In NTPC manager level guy was doing almost the same thing as I was. Apart from signing of some documents. And both of us had to report to DGM directly. It is not so in railways. Responsibility and power increases with every promotion.

5) Salary wise comparison shouldn’t be there. As IAS/IPS get the same salary as IES guys. So virtually you are comparing PSU and IAS on salary grounds!

6)DRMs and GM are authorized to use beacon. This is for those who are fascinated by it. But of course, everybody can’t reach there and it takes 25yrs to become DRM. But there is no chance in PSU.

7) A railway SAG officer (18-22yrs) becomes GM when he is on deputation in a PSU. It will take you much longer in a PSU in ntpc it was minimum 26-27 yrs and that too there was no surety just like DRM post in railway. But in railway you will get SAG 100% before 22-23yrs.

8) Housing facilities have much difference. To know the actual difference you can visit any railway colony and ask for the bungalows there. You will get the difference. AEN bungalow in first posting can be up to 3 acres in area at some locations. Generally it is around1.5-2 acres!
My father recently got a bungalow in coal India ltd at DGM level after working for 23 yrs! compare this.

9)There are other add ons. Like authority to use  the national emblem. Even on your visiting card. There is same format for this for IAS/IPS guys as well. So you get value anywhere by showing this. For eg, I don’t have to pay any toll taxes on any toll bridge of roadways. I have tried it most where and succeeded. Only exception was gurgaon toll bridge!! These small things make you feel powerful.

So, I feel that railways is much better than any PSU.
I have not worked else where so can’t compare other services with PSU.