Union Minister Piyush Goyal on Monday said the Indian Railways have introduced new General Conditions or Contracts (GCC) for Services to define the terms and conditions for contractors engaged in service contracts for non-operational areas.
The non-operational areas include - housekeeping, facilities management, Consultancy among others, as distinct from Works.
"Under the leadership of Union Minister of Railways Coal, Piyush Goyal the Ministry of Railways is committed to bringing transparency and accountability in the system to make it more efficient and beneficial for the people," said a press statement by the Indian Railways.
It also stated that the new policy of General Conditions of Contract for Services, for the first time, introduces the concepts of digital labour management system, stepped performance guarantee in place of security deposit, access to liquidity as qualifying criteria and specific provisions violation of which will lead to disqualification of bidders.
Speaking of the advantages of the new method, Goyal said: "the new contract system will ease the registration process for bidders, promote competitiveness and help Railways to save more on cost".
Railways had recently issued standard bid document (SBD) for housekeeping.
"The digital management labour system mandates contractor to maintain a database of all workers including their attendance data and salary details," said a statement by Indian Railways.
It also stated that a contractor bidding for service will be disqualified if the penalty has been levied three times in last two years for violation of labour laws.
"Service contracts are characterized by a regular requirement of funds; therefore, access to liquidity has been included as a qualifying criterion," said a statement.
A committee of Executive Directors of Railway Board was formed with a mandate for simplification and improvement of service contracts with a view to improving the quality of services and service contract management.
The recommendation of the Committee after approval of concerned directorates and approval of Railway Board was adopted as "The general conditions of contract for services on 02.01.2018". The new GCC is a result of wide-ranging consultations, profound erudition and of an immensely valuable contribution of various directorates of Railway Board.