Staff Reporter

MADURAI: Chief Minister, M. Karunanidhi should try to get adequate funds for to successfully implement all the railway projects announced for Tamil Nadu in the Railway Budget, Southern Railway Mazdoor Union, general secretary, N. Kanniah, has said.

Talking to reporters here on Wednesday, he said a total of Rs. 528 crore was required over and above the allocation of Rs. 813 crores for the gauge conversion, doubling and new line works. “Last year, the Chief Minister got an additional Rs. 278 crore for the railway projects. He should do the same this year too,” he said.

The SRMU has demanded to relax the norms for voluntary retirement for workers in safety category, like trackman, pointsman, khalasis of electrical, mechanical, signal and engineering departments. Instead of 58 years of age and 30 years of service as eligibility for voluntary retirement, the norms should be relaxed to 50 years of age and 20 years of service. One of the children of the employees opting for voluntary retirement is given job under the scheme, he added.

Mr. Kanniah said that the new tax rates announced in the Union Budget has only benefitted people who were getting Rs. 50,000 and above monthly salary. It has disappointed the railway men and other salaried class employees, he said.