The Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved 78-day wages as productivity-liked bonus to over 11.52 lakh railway employees for the financial year 2018-19, a move that is expected to encourage employees and improve their productivity.

Towards this, the government will have to shell out as much as 2,024.40 crore.

“Payment of PLB equivalent to 78 days wages to eligible railway employees (excluding RPF/RPSF personnel) for the FY 2018-19 would result in motivating a large number of railway employees to improve the performance of the railways and enhance the productivity levels further, besides maintaining industrial peace," the government said in a release.

This is the sixth consecutive year that the government has maintained a bonus of 78 days wages and has never lowered it.

“PLB (performance-linked bonus) to all non-gazetted railway employees is an acknowledgement of their contribution to the efficient running of the railways. There being large number of railwaymen and their families, this acknowledgement will enhance the sense of inclusiveness and equity among them," it said.

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