Jaya Sinha Becomes 1st Female Chairman & CEO of Indian Railways

31 August, 2023 | Pooja

Jaya National

Jaya Verma Sinha becomes the first woman to hold the CEO position in Indian Railways' 166-year history.

In a groundbreaking development, the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) has given its nod for the appointment of Jaya Verma Sinha, a seasoned member of the Indian Railway Management Services (IRMS), as the new Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Railway Board.

This appointment marks a significant milestone in the 166-year history of the Indian Railways, as Jaya Verma Sinha assumes the role of CEO, becoming the first woman to hold this esteemed position.

Sinha commenced her career with the Indian Railway Traffic Service (IRTS) in 1988. Currently, she serves as a Member of Operations and Business Development on the Railway Board under the Ministry of Railways. Sinha is responsible for overseeing the comprehensive transportation of both freight and passenger services across the Indian Railways network.

Before her current assignment, she held the position of Additional Member of Traffic Transportation on the Railway Board. Over the last two years, the Indian Railways has achieved an unprecedented growth rate of over 20 percent in the freight segment, surpassing the milestone of annually transporting 1.5 billion tonnes of freight.

With over 35 years of service in the Indian Railways, Sinha’s diverse roles span operations, commercial activities, IT, and vigilance. She was notably the first woman to be appointed as the Principal Chief Operations Manager of South Eastern Railway. She has also held the positions of Principal Chief Commercial Manager of Northern Railway and Divisional Railway Manager of Sealdah Division. During her tenure as Railway Advisor in the High Commission of India in Dhaka, Bangladesh, the iconic Maitri Express connecting Kolkata to Dhaka was inaugurated.

Sinha’s remarkable career within the Indian Railways showcases her exceptional leadership and expertise, particularly in the domains of Operations and Business Development. Her elevation to the prestigious role of Chairman and CEO of the Railway Board is a testament to her remarkable contributions and unwavering dedication to the growth of the railway sector.

Jaya Verma Sinha is set to assume her new role on or after September 1, 2023. Her appointment will extend until her superannuation, with an additional re-employment period from October 1, 2023, to August 31, 2024. This significant announcement comes with the assurance that her tenure will follow standard terms and conditions, or until further directives are issued, whichever occurs earlier.

Founded in 1905, the Railway Board, a pivotal institution within the Indian Railways framework, has functioned for over 118 years. Sinha’s elevation to the position of Chairman and CEO marks a historic moment, as it’s the first instance in its history where a woman holds this influential post. Her appointment not only underscores her exceptional capabilities but also reflects the growing recognition of gender diversity and inclusivity in leadership roles within India’s railway sector.

As Jaya Verma Sinha gears up to shoulder this historic responsibility, the broader railway community eagerly anticipates the positive transformations and progressive advancements that her leadership is poised to bring to one of India’s oldest and most critical sectors.