Indian Railways organisational structure

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The Indian Railways are broadly organised from functional groups within the Indian Railway Service. India's rail system is managed at a regional level since Indian Railways have divided themselves into seventeen zonal railways. Each zone, headed by a General Manager, is semi-autonomous and this creates a matrix organisation where the functional branches are under dual control viz.

  • Operational Control at Zonal level
  • Functional Policy & Guidance from the Railway Board

Railway Board[edit]

At the apex of the management organisation is the Railway Board, also called the Ministry of Railways. The board is headed by a Chairman who directly reports to the Railway Minister. The board has five other members.

The General Managers of the zonal railways and the production units both report to the Board

Zonal management[edit]

The current 17 zones of the Indian Railways are

Name Abbr. Headquarters
Central Railway CR Mumbai
Eastern Railway ER Kolkata
East Central Railway ECR Hajipur
East Coast Railway ECoR Bhubaneswar
Northern Railway NR Delhi
North Central Railway NCR Allahabad
North Western Railway NWR Jaipur
North Eastern Railway NER Gorakhpur
Northeast Frontier Railway NFR Maligaon (Guwahati)
Southern Railway SR Chennai
South Central Railway SCR Secunderabad
South Eastern Railway SER Kolkata
South East Central Railway SECR Bilaspur, CG
South Western Railway SWR Hubballi
Western Railway WR Mumbai
West Central Railway WCR Jabalpur
Metro Railway MTP Kolkata

Divisional organisation[edit]

The Divisional Railway Manager (DRM) heads the organisation at the division level. There are currently 71 divisions on the system nationwide. The divisions are primarily involved with train running but may also have locomotive sheds (repair shops for locomotives), coaching depots (repair home bases for passenger trains), and wagon depots (repair and maintenance points for freight stock).

Each division has all the functional organisations (both line and staff). The heads of these functional groups report to the DRM for administrative purposes but rely on the railway board and the zonal headquarters for policy guidelines.


The various Group A cadres are as below:

Non Technical Services recruitment through Civil Services Examination conducted by UPSC

  • IRTS - Indian Railway Traffic Service
  • IRPS - Indian Railway Personnel Service
  • IRAS - Indian Railway Accounts Service
  • RPF - Railway Protection Force

Technical Services recruitment through Indian Engineering Services Examination conducted by UPSC

  • IRSE - Indian Railway Service (Civil) Engineers
  • IRSEE - Indian Railway Service of Electrical Engineers
  • IRSME - Indian Railway Service of Mechanical Engineers
  • IRSS - Indian Railway Stores Service
  • IRSSE - Indian Railway Service of Signal Engineers

Medical Services recruitment through Combined medical Examination conducted by UPSC

  • IRMS - Indian Railway Medical Service

See also[edit]


External links[edit]