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This new year, railways will only send greetings digitally and all its events will be sans the traditional presentation of bouquets. The railway board has banned issuing of greeting cards and presentation of bouquets, according to two separate circulars issued today. "It has been decided that printing and issuing of hard copy of New Year greeting card may be stopped forthwith.
Greeting cards for new year may now be sent through email only," said the circular issued to all departments of the railways including its PSUs for "strict compliance". This is the latest in a string of directives from the board Chairman Ashwani Lohani and Railway Minister Piyush Goyal to banish ostentation and VIP culture in railways. Earlier, the ministry had brought to an end a 36-year-old protocol where it was mandatory for general managers to present themselves on arrival and departure of the Railway Board chairman and other board members during zonal visits. "It has been decided to impose a blanket ban on presentation of floral bouquets by any officer or official to anyone including important dignitaries during official occasions or functions in all offices of the ministry of railways," said another circular issued today. As part of this initiative to go austere, Goyal had also asked senior officials to give up travelling in cosy saloons and executive class travel privileges for sleeper and AC three-tier classes. These include members of the Railway Board, general managers of railway zones and divisional railway managers in each of the 50 divisions.
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