|Railway Protection Force (RPF)|
|Motto||यशो लभस्व (Sanskrit)|
|Formed||2 July, 1872|
|Employees||75,000 active personnel|
|Governing body||Indian Railways, Ministry of Railways, Government of India|
|Headquarters||New Delhi, India|
Railway Protection Force (RPF) is a security force under the ownership of Indian Railways, Ministry of Railways, Government of India established by the Railway Protection Force Act, 1957; enacted by the Indian Parliament for "the better protection and security of railway property and passenger area". It has the power to search, arrest, investigate, and prosecute offenses committed under Railway Property (Unlawful Possession) Act 1966, The Railways Act, 1989 (amended from time to time). However the power of arrests under other penal laws rests in the hands of the Government Railway Police (GRP) of state police. The force is under the authority of the Indian Ministry of Railways.
All the officers of Railway Protection Force are members of the Indian Railway Protection Force Service (IRPFS) and are recruited through UPSC Civil Services Examination. They are recruited as Group-A Central Civil Servants. However, the post of Director-General of RPF is held on deputation by a senior Indian Police Service (IPS) officer. Recruitment also occurs for various posts like sub-inspectors & constables. Such recruitments are conducted through various exams held by the Ministry of Railways, Government of India.
The maintenance and security of Railways, the vital artery of national communication and economic progress has been a major concern of the Government of India that goes back to the times when the Railway commenced their operations in India in 1854. Since railways have a linear territory traversing inter-state lines, a foolproof security system has been hard to provide. Nevertheless, the genesis of such an endeavor can be traced back to 1854 when East Indian Railways employed certain staff designated as ‘Police’ to denote its own force by enacting the Police Act, 1861 and deployed a contingent for the security of the railway with the owner companies bearing their upkeep. The Railway Companies exercised full control over the Police Force.
On the recommendation of Railway Police Committee, 1872, Railway Police was organized into ‘Govt. Police’ (The precursor of GRP) for Law enforcement and ‘Company Police’ (The precursor of RPF) for Watch and Ward duties in Railways. The actual separation of duties came into effect in 1881. By 1882, as a result of formal division of the Police Force deployed on the railways into “Government Police” and “Private (Companies) Police”, the Railway Companies directly assumed the responsibility of protection and Security of their property as well as of the goods entrusted to them by public for carriage. For this, they appointed “Chowkidars” for various departments and placed them under control of their local departmental heads. With an increase in commercial traffic and consequential steep rise in the incidence of theft of goods entrusted to railways for carriage, the “Chowkidar” system was reorganized after the first World War onto Watch & Ward organization under a single superior officer designated as Superintendent, Watch & Ward – a system which continued up to 1954.Thus the Railway Police Administration functioned under three different systems viz the district system, as a part of District Police; the provincial system, for each province and the Railway Administration system, separate Railway Police for each Railway Administration inspite of recommendations of Indian Police commission, 1902-03. The provincial system found acceptance on recommendation of Railway Police Committee, 1921 and the present GRP came into existence. The ‘Company Police’ evolved into present RPF in 1957 passing through "Watch and Ward" phase from 1872-1954, and as "Railway Security Force" from 1954-1956. RPF was also given limited legal powers under Railway Stores (Unlawful Possession) Act.
Thus, for a full 100 years, the Force though being used for providing security to the vital artery of national communication and economic progress did not itself have any legislative status. Therefore the Govt. instituted a special enquiry through Director, Intelligence Bureau (Ministry of Home Affairs) who in his report in 1954 forcefully brought out the necessity of organising the Watch & Ward on a statutory basis. The Railway Board also appointed a Security Adviser to the Railway Board in July, 1953 to work out the details for the reorganisation of the Watch & Ward department. It was decided in consultation with the Ministry of Home Affairs that there should be an integrated well organised force on the model of the Police with adequate supervisory staff specially trained to meet the particular aspects of crime that were relevant to Railway property and to work in close collaboration and act as a second line to the States Police with whom, under the Constitution, policing on Railways rested. This led to the R.P.F. Bill for the better protection and security. It was only on 29 August 1957 that a Railway Protection Force Act was enacted by the Parliament and Railway Security Force was renamed as Railway Protection Force. The RPF Rules were made on 10 September 1959 and RPF Regulations wee formulated in 1966.In the meantime in 1962 “Special Emergency Force” has been raised from the existing strength of RPF during Chinese Aggression, which was especially entrusted the task to protect trains in border districts. In 1965 it has been renamed as “Railway Protection Special Force”. In 1966 RPF has been given legal powers for better protection of Railway property by enacting Railway Property (Unlawful Possession.) Act.
But, while the provisions of RPF Act were soon found wanting for the maintenance of an effective and disciplined Force, the RPF Rules and Regulations too were found judicially unsound. The RPF Act, 1957 was accordingly modified by Parliament vide Act No.60 of 1985 on 20 September 1985 for the constitution and maintenance of the Force as an armed force of the Union. For carrying out the purposes of the Act, RPF Rules 1987 was framed.
The percentage of women in the RPF is the highest among all central paramilitary forces in India. It stands at 10% as of March 2019.
The Gazetted IRPFS Officers utilises a similar rank structure to the IPS (Indian Police Service). Non-gazetted ranks are the same as those used in the State Police Services. The job profile differs for each position 
|Grade||RPF Position||Equivalent Position or Designation in the Government of India (GOI)|
|Above Super Time Scale (Apex Scale)||Director General of Police||Director General (GOI), Secretary (R) in Cabinet Secretariat (GOI), Director General in CAPFs, Lieutenant-General (three-star rank).|
|Above Super Time Scale (HAG)(Pay-Band-4)||Additional Director General (ADG)||Additional Director General of Police, Commissioner of Police (City), Special or Additional Director (GOI), Special or Additional Secretary (R) Cabinet Secretariat (GOI), ADG in CAPFs.|
|Super Time Scale (Senior Administrative Grade)(Pay-Band-4)(IG after 5 years of service as DIG)||Principal Chief Security Commissioner (PCSC)
or Inspector-General (IG), Railway Protection Special Force (RPSF)
|Inspector General of Police, Commissioner of Police (City), Joint Secretary if empaneled as such (R) Cabinet Secretariat (GOI), IG of CAPFs. Major-General (two-star rank).|
|Super Time Scale (DIG/Conservator Grade)(Pay-Band-4)(DIG after 5 years of service as Sr. DSC/Sr. Commandant RPSF)||Chief Security Commissioner (CSC)
Deputy Inspector-General (DIG), RPSF
|, Director (R) Cabinet Secretariat (GOI), DIG in CAPFs. Colonel/Brigadier (one-star rank).|
|Selection Grade (Pay-Band-4)(After 8 years of service as DSC/Commandant RPSF)||Deputy Chief Security Commissioner (Dy.CSC)
Sr. Security Commissioner, Sr. Divisional Security Commissioner (Sr.DSC) (Division)
Sr. Commandant RPSF
|Senior Superintendent of Police, Director (R) Cabinet Secretariat (GOI), Commandants of CAPFs. Lieutenant Colonel.|
|Senior Time Scale (Pay-Band-3)(After 5 years of service in cadre)||Divisional Security Commissioner (Division)
Security Commissioner RPF
|Additional Superintendent of Police, Deputy Commandants of CAPFs. Major (pay grade).|
|Junior Time Scale(Pay-Band-3)||Assistant Security Commissioner (ASC)
Assistant Commandant RPSF/Adjutant
|Assistant Superintendent of Police, Circle Officer, Senior Field Officer (R) Cabinet Secretariat. Lieutenant (pay grade).|
|Rank group||General/flag officers||Field/senior officers||Junior officers||Officer cadet|
| Railway Protection Force
|Zonal/Divisional HQ Designation||
||Principal Chief Security Commissioner (PCSC)||Chief Security Commissioner (CSC)||Senior Divisional Security Commissioner (Sr. DSC)||Divisional Security Commissioner (DSC)||ASC||Assistant Security Commissioner (ASC)
|Inspector General (IG)||Deputy Inspector General (DIG)||Senior Superintendent (SSP)||Superintendent (SP)||ACP/ASP||ACP/ASP|
|Rank||Inspector||Sub-inspector||Assistant sub-inspector||Head constable||Constable|
The governance of RPF is based on the following relevant legislation, rules and directives.
|Designation – Superior Officers|
|Director General (DG)|
|Additional Director General
|Principal Chief Security Commissioner||Principal Chief Security Commissioner/RPSF|
|Chief Security Commissioner||Chief Security Commissioner/RPSF|
|Dy. Chief Security Commissioner/Senior Security Commissioner||Senior Divisional Security Commissioner (Sr. DSC)||Sr. Commandant|
|Divisional Security Commissioner (DSC)||Commandant|
|Assistant Security Commissioner (ASC)||Assistant Security Commissioner (ASC)||Assistant Commandant / Adjutant|
|Designation – Subordinate Officers and below|
|Driver / Head Constable|
|Breeding and Training Center for police dogs|
|Central Crime Bureau|
|Central Weapons Store|
|Crime Intelligence wing|
|Special Intelligence Branch|
|Cyber Cell Branch|
((cite web)): CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)