Core responsibility to assist Parliament in ensuring executive accountability, transparency: CAG
While speaking at the inaugural speech of the week-long Audit Diwas celebrations in the presence of Vice-President of India Jagdeep Dhankar, he said the CAG had been able to perform our tasks with a sense of purpose and duty despite the challenges of newer priorities of governance and changing dynamics of work culture in terms of emerging financial accounting systems and new technologies.
Comptroller and Auditor General of India Girish Chandra Murmu on Wednesday said one of the core responsibilities of the CAG was to assist the Parliament and state legislatures in ensuring executive accountability and transparency. While speaking at the inaugural speech of the week-long Audit Diwas celebrations in the presence of Vice-President Jagdeep Dhankar, he said the CAG had been able to perform our tasks with a sense of purpose and duty despite the challenges of newer priorities of governance and changing dynamics of work culture in terms of emerging financial accounting systems and new technologies.
He said, "In recent years, the volume of work and activities has also increased manifold. We need to, therefore, constantly innovate to stay relevant." To strengthen executive accountability, Girish Chandra Murmu said the CAG had introduced various innovative audit products for focused engagement such as Departmental Appreciation Notes, Management Letters and Study Reports. He said these products would be useful for the Executive to keep track of our audit findings and also believed that this initiative, along with the CAG's Audit Reports, would bring tangible benefits in the day-to-day working of the executive.
Girish Chandra Murmu said, "An impactful audit and a responsive executive can improve efficiency to a large extent, which will ultimately impact the lives of ordinary citizens in the spirit of 'minimum government and maximum governance,'" He said in this context, a volume of The Compendium on Catalysts in Pursuit of Good Governance had been put together. He said, "The idea is to promote good practices in all our audit and accounts departmental offices" and added that these efforts would yield rich dividends in terms of improving the quality of professional skills and audit products.
Girish Chandra Murmu said, this year, CAG introduced a new system of technical inspection for implementation in all our audit offices and also framed the Peer Review Guidelines for our audit offices in alignment with the best international practices. Another pioneering effort of the CAG, he said, has been the development of a guidance framework for utilising technology tools, such as remote sensing, geographic information system and GPS for audit planning, implementation and evidence gathering. This would have far-reaching implications in the audit of land and dependent physical resources like forest, water bodies, land use, agriculture, irrigation and mining, among others, he said.
In a ground-breaking move, He said the Government Accounting Standards Advisory Board (GASAB), an inter-governmental body under CAG, recently released the first-ever publication of Asset Accounts of Natural Resources. He said this data was prepared in line with the UN system of Environmental and Economic Accounts and covers all 28 states and one Union Territory. He said, "We are proud that this specialised handbook is one of the few examples of Natural Resource Accounting anywhere in the world."
He also added that "The first such account was formally released in the presence of Honourable Minister of Coal and Mines, Shri Pralhad Joshi ji, in October this year, and we are hopeful that it will enable the government to take decisions on optimal utilisation of natural resources while being mindful of issues of sustainability." (ANI)
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