India will be represented on the high table of global rail-transport policy making as Arun Kumar, Director General of the Railway Protection Force (RPF), has been nominated to be the vice-chairman of the Paris-based Security Platform Union Internationale Des Chemins/International Union of Railways (UIC).
Kumar, who is a 1985-batch Indian Police Service (IPS) officer, will be working at the prestigious global body, some of whose members are China, Japan, Russia and the European countries among others, for two years, starting 2020.
The UIC is the global platform for railway systems working on inter-operability, developing common technical standards for railways across the world and strengthening what is called “rail diplomacy”.
Kumar, in January this year, had presented at the UIC various measures taken by the Indian Railways to organise the Kumbh fair, the largest gathering in the world.
“I will be taking over through video conference now. UIC is a prestigious global platform for railway systems to come together and exchange ideas on various issues. India has been working closely with UIC,” Kumar told The Indian Express.
After the two-year tenure of vice-chairmanship, the chairmanship of the Security Platform will go to DG, RPF for the next two years.
The security platform promotes the exchange of information and experience among the security agencies of UIC members and proposes common interest projects and activities in the field of railway security as dictated by requirement of members or external events. “The COVID-19 Task Force setup by UIC security platform has proved to be very useful in exchange of ideas, precautions to be taken, restoration efforts and experience sharing during the current pandemic,” a statement from Railways said.
India has future projects like international rail linkages to Russia and the likes which will get well represented at the global stage owing to this development, officials said. Officials also said that with Chinese railway hardly ever sharing any data, Indian Railways is a significant member of the UIC as the largest mover of passengers and freight after China.