Indian Railways to end use of British-era ‘Dak’ messenger system
New Delhi: The Indian Railways has finally taken up the decision to end the British-era practice of sending confidential documents via Dak messengers and will upgrade to using videoconferencing for communication. This is Indian Railway's latest attempt to cut costs in the world's largest railway system.
“As a measure to reduce cost and improve savings on establishment related expenditure, the Board has desired that all discussions amongst officials of Railways PSU /Railway Board should invariably be held over video conferencing accordingly booking of personal messenger/Dak messenger should be stopped immediately. Compliance of the above should be ensured, as it would lead significant savings in allowances, stationery, Fax etc.,” state an order issued to the railway zones on July 24.
The Dak messengers are peons who physically carry files and sensitive documents across the entire network of railways and the practice was first introduced when the British started operating trains in India. Down the years, with internet and emails taking over the entire communication networks, this British-era system was still functional in Indian Railways.
Earlier, Indian Railways had frozen the creation of new posts, reduction of manpower at various workshops and moving ceremonial functions to digital platform as a measure of cost-cutting for them.