VISAKHAPATNAM: Some employees of Visakhapatnam-based Waltair Railway Division (WRD) are fraudulently subletting their quarters to non-railway persons and to even commercial outlets.
Around 270 subletting cases have been detected so far within the WRD limits under East Coast Railway zone. A few have even gone on to sell their quarters to others with forged documents.
For example, a railway employee sublet his quarter (RE/13) in Dolphin’s Nose Colony at Vizag to a non-railway person four years ago. The employee then went on to sell the sublet portion for ₹6 lakh by forging ownership documents. However, the employee died of illness and the squatter had to vacate the quarter. That is when the issue of subletting came to light.
Railways authorities then started enquiring about such quarters. They ended up detecting nearly 270 portions that had been sublet in the division at Jagadalpur, Koraput, Rayagada, Parlakimidi, Gunupur, Srikakulam Road, Vizianagaram and Visakhapatnam. Officials cut off electricity and water supply to the illegal occupants.
Inquiries also revealed that some employees in the division have held specific positions for decades, using their close ties with locally influential people, including MPs and MLAs. For instance, a goods guard clerk enjoyed the position of advertisement inspector’s post at WRD headquarters in the city for about 21 years, blackmailing his superiors in the process. When he was transferred to the satellite station area, he went underground. He tried to influence WRD administration through various means without success, a railway source said.
Similarly, several have been found occupying posts in sports organisations for many years, thereby receiving illegal financial benefits without even being sportsmen.
Speaking to Deccan Chronicle, WRD manager Anup Kumar Satpathy said, “Yes, there have been fraudulent practices involving railway employees in the division. Action is being taken against more than two dozen staff.”...