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Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG)

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Last updated date: 23rd Apr 2024
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Who is Comptroller and Auditor General?

The Comptroller and Auditor General of India is the apex authority responsible for carrying out external and internal audits of government expenditures. It is often called the CAG of India. In the Constitution, only the Comptroller and Auditor General are entrusted with auditing the accounts of the Union and of the States. Auditing the receipts and expenditures of the Central, the States, and the Union Territories is the responsibility of the Comptroller and Auditor General. Several audit reports are presented to the state legislatures and the Parliament of the union territories each year by the CAG. The CAG is also responsible for auditing government companies, corporations, and bodies, and authorities in accordance with the laws passed by the legislature and the rules promulgated thereunder.


Major Responsibilities of CAG

The office has been given certain privileges and powers that facilitate its duties to facilitate the auditing process. CAG of India is composed primarily of these major powers:

  • In the course of the audit, the CAG and its staff can inspect any of the offices of the organizations. Moreover, he and his team can scrutinize and question government transactions in every aspect. In his report submitted to Parliament, the CAG may incorporate any objections he has included in his review of the transactions.

  • The office needs to be able to perform this function smoothly since all financial records, including books, papers, and documents, are authorized for him to view. In addition, the CAG has the right to ask any person or organization for relevant information. A Government of India order made in 1936 to enforce the Act of 1935 affirmed the right of the CAG to ask for information and accounts.

Providing him with free access to files and information is a practice that dates back to the past. Nonetheless, the central government introduced a modification in 1954, requiring secret documents to be sent to the CAG by name specifically and returned as soon as the work is completed.


Explain the Power and Work of CAG

Constitution of India, Article 148, specifies the authority and explains the work of CAG. The following statements are made in regards to the establishment and work of the CAG and its powers:

  • The President of India only has the authority to appoint CAG, and the removal of CAG is carried only on the same grounds and in the same manner as Supreme Court judges are removed.

  • Persons appointed to this office must swear an oath of office before the President or another person designated by the office of the President.

  • In India, salaries, service conditions, leaves of absence, pensions, and retirement ages are determined by Parliament and are outlined in the second schedule in such a way that service conditions and salaries may not be modified to the disadvantage of the incumbent during their tenure.

  • Neither the Government of India nor any state government has the power to appoint the CAG to any further position after the end of their tenure.

  • According to the Indian Constitution and all Acts of Parliament, the CAG is bound by the provisions of the Constitution and the service contracts governing the Indian Audit and Accounts Department. Using the President's approval, these will be governed by the regulations.

  • The Consolidated Fund of India will take care of the administrative costs of this office, including all allowances, salaries, and pensions.

  • This position is filled for a six-year term or until the incumbent reaches age 65, whichever comes first.


Functions of Comptroller and Auditor General of India

A constitutional function of the government, the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) are independent of Parliament and the legislature and executive branch officials. Here are some of the functions of comptroller and auditor general of India:

  • Audit of government ministries and government departments in India and the states.

  • Audits of the public sector entities of the central and state governments and other autonomous government entities.

  • Audit of Union or State receipts.

  • Accounts and stock audits.

  • Company and corporation audits.

As part of their mandate, Comptroller and Auditor-Generals compile accounts for State Governments, approve pension plans for selected employee categories, and maintain provident fund accounts for most State Governments' employees. Under the supervision of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India, the Indian Audit & Accounts Department (IA&AD) performs these audits and accounting tasks.


Comptroller and Auditor General of India List

From 1948 to the present Comptroller and auditor general of India, the given list contains all information:


Comptroller and Auditor General of India List

Term

V. Narahari Rao

1948 -1954

A.K Chanda

1954 -1960

A.K Roy

1960 -1966

S. Ranganathan

1966 -1972

A.Bakshi

1972 -1978

Gian Prakash

1978 -1984

T.N Chaturvedi

1984 -1990

C.G Somiah

1990 -1996

V.K Shunglu

1996 – 2002

V. N. Kaul

2002 – 2008

Vinod Rai

2008 – 2013

Shashi Kant Sharma

2013 – 2017

Rajiv Mehrishi

2017 – Aug 2020

Girish Chandra Murmu

Present


Conclusion

Thus, the CAG is one of the important Constitutional bodies of India. It is considered as a permanent body added by the founding fathers of the Constitution. The important thing you need to keep in mind is that the CAG of India does not work as the "Comptroller" but only as a "Auditor General". The reports of the CAG are said to be submitted to the President of the country who is said to be laid down in the Parliament where the PAC (which of the Public Accounts Committee) used to take care of the reports in which CAG also helps the PAC in order to understand the technical reports.

FAQs on Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG)

1. Who appoints the comptroller and auditor general of India?

The question 'who appoints the comptroller and auditor general of India' is often asked in the UPSC exams, either directly or indirectly. The comptroller and auditor general of India is appointed by the President by warrant under his hand and seal. As a Supreme Court Judge, the seal will only be removed from office on similar grounds and in the same manner. In India, only a few offices are directly appointed by the President of the country, such as the Comptroller and Auditor General.

2. Who is responsible for the removal of CAG?

When it is proven that there is misconduct or misbehaving, or incompetence on the part of the CAG, the President can remove it with a special resolution passed by both houses of the Parliament with a special majority. No one else has the authority to remove CAG or question their work during their tenure.

3. Which article of the constitution describes the duties and responsibilities of India's CAG?

The powers and functions of this office are described in Articles 148, 149, 150, as well as 151 of the Constitution of India.