The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India is an authority, set up by Article 148 of the Constitution of India, which audits all receipts and expenditure of the Government of India and the state governments, covering those of bodies and authorities substantially financed by the government. The CAG is also the external auditor of Government-owned corporations and conducts a supplementary audit of government companies, i.e., any non-banking/ non-insurance company in which Union Government has an equity share of at least 51 percent or subsidiary companies of existing government companies. The reports of the CAG are taken into consideration by the Public Accounts Committees (PACs) and Committees on Public Undertakings (COPUs), which are special committees in the Parliament of India and the state legislatures. The CAG is also the major of the Indian Audit and Accounts Department, the affairs of which are managed by officers of Indian Audit and Accounts Service, and has over 58,000 employees across India.
The CAG is mentioned in the Constitution of India in Article 149 – 151. The CAG is ranked 9th and enjoys the equal status as a judge of Supreme Court of India in Indian order of precedence. The present CAG of India is Rajiv Mehrishi, who assumed office on 25 September 2017. He is the 13th CAG of India. The Comptroller and Auditor-General of India are selected by the President of India following a recommendation by the Prime Minister. On appointment, he/she has to make an oath or affirmation prior to the President of India.
Duties of the CAG
- As per the rules of the constitution, the CAG’s (DPC) (Duties, Powers and Conditions of Service) Act, 1971 was enacted. As per the several provisions, the duties of the CAG include the audit of:
- Receipts and expenditure from the Consolidated Fund of India and of the State and Union Territory having a legislative assembly.
- Trading, manufacturing, profit and loss accounts and balance sheets, and other subsidiary accounts kept in any Government department; Accounts of stores and stock kept in Government offices or departments.
- Government companies according to the provisions of the Companies Act, 2013.
- Corporations set up by or under laws made by Parliament in accordance with the provisions of the respective legislation.
- Authorities and bodies substantially financed from the Consolidated Funds of the Union and State Governments. Anybody or authority even though not substantially financed from the Consolidated Fund, the audit of which may be entrusted to the C&AG.
- Grants and loans provided by Government to bodies and authorities for specific purposes.
- Entrusted audits e.g. those of Panchayati Raj Institutions and Urban Local Bodies under Technical Guidance & Support (TGS).