I. WHAT IS CAG ?
The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India is an authority, that audits all receipts and expenditure of the Government of India and the state governments. It is established by Article 148 of the Constitution of India. The CAG is also the external auditor of Government-owned corporations and conducts a supplementary audit of government companies
There are several eminent Articles in the constitution that are enshrined to direct the responsibilities of the CAG as well as protect his powers. These articles are:
• Article 148 encompasses details regarding the CAG appointment, oath and conditions of service.
• Article 149 comprises Duties and Powers of the Comptroller and Auditor-General of India.
• Article 150 states details of the accounts of the Union and of the States shall be kept in such form as the President may, on the advice of the CAG, prescribe.
• Article 151 deals with the reports of the Comptroller and Auditor-General of India relating to the accounts of the Union shall be submitted to the president, who shall cause them to be laid before each House of Parliament.
The CAG can be removed only on an address from both houses of parliament on the ground of proved misbehaviour or incapacity. The CAG vacates the office on attaining the age of 65 years or 6-year term, whichever is earlier or by impeachment process.
II. AUTHORITY AND INDEPENDENCE OF A CAG
There are several provisions in the Constitution for safeguarding the independence of CAG.(S)he is appointed by the President by warrant under his hand and seal. They are provided with tenure of 6 years or 65 years of age, whichever is earlier.
CCAG can be removed by the President only in accordance with the procedure mentioned in the Constitution that is the manner same as removal of a Supreme Court Judge. He is ineligible to hold any office, either under the Government of India or of any state, once he retires/ resigns as a CAG
The stipend of the CAG and other service conditions cannot be varied to his disadvantage after appointment .The administrative powers and the conditions of service of persons serving in the Indian Audit and Accounts Department are prescribed by the President only after consulting him.The administrative expenses of the office of CAG, including all salaries, allowances and pensions are charged upon the Consolidated Fund of India that is not subject to vote
III. INDIA CAG vs UK CAG : A COMPARISON
• IIn India, the CAG performs the role of an Auditor General but not of a Comptroller. However, in Britain they have the power of both Comptroller as well as Auditor General.
• In India, CAG is not a member of the parliament while in Britain, it is quite contrary. The UK CAG is a member of house of the Commons.
• In India the CAG audits the accounts after the expenditure is committed i.e. ex post facto. In UK no money can be drawn from the public exchequer without the approval of the CAG.
IV. CURRENT CAG OF INDIA
G C Murmu, former J&K lieutenant governor, was appointed the Comptroller and Auditor General on Thursday.
Following his recent comments related to the elections and restoration of 4G Internet services in the Union territory, Murmu’s resigned as L-G. These comments were seen as contrary to the Centre’s position.
He had started working at the Centre as Joint Secretary in the Expenditure Department in April 2015, and proceeded to hold the position of Additional Secretary
Between June 2016 and December 2017, he had served as Additional Secretary in the Department of Financial Services, and was involved in the implementation of the Indradhanush plan for public sector banks.