No taker of CAG recommendations on checking parking of funds
Seeks report from Administrative Secretaries for action
JAMMU, Sept 19: Government has detected blatant violation of Jammu and Kashmir Financial Code and irregular diversion of funds by various departments and has sought detailed report in this regard from all the concerned Administrative Secretaries as early as possible for necessary action.
The Rule 2.2(a) of the Jammu and Kashmir Financial Code clearly states that all sums of money which any State officer receives in his official capacity must immediately be paid in full into the nearest treasury without any deduction whatever and the amount must immediately be credited by the Treasury Officer to the appropriate head of account.
Moreover, the appropriation of departmental receipts for departmental expenditure is strictly prohibited under this Rule of the Financial Code.
From time to time instructions were issued by the Finance Department to all the departments for strict compliance to not only this Rule but other provisions of the J&K Financial Code. Even otherwise, the J&K Financial Code lays emphasis on following of Rules in letter and spirit by all the departments and authorities under the State Government except to the extent indicated in the Rules themselves.
However, it has come to the notice of the Finance Department that various departments and their subordinate offices retain the receipts unauthorizedly in the bank accounts in contravention to the statutory rules and orders issued by the Finance Department from time to time, official sources told EXCELSIOR.
“Moreover, the Finance Department has noticed that various departments are making irregular diversion of funds released into their bank accounts by throwing norms to the winds”, they further said while disclosing that non-adherence to the Rules of J&K Financial Code has been viewed seriously by the Financial Commissioner, Finance Department Dr A K Mehta.
He has asked all the Administrative Secretaries to direct their subordinate officers/offices to immediately remit all receipts into the concerned treasuries under proper head of the account.
The Financial Commissioner Finance Department has further directed the concerned officers to report instances of irregular diversion of funds as early as possible and remit the unutilized amount into the treasuries. He has, however, clarified that legitimate demands of the departments can be considered by the Government on its merits.
“All this clearly reveals that there is no strict adherence to the J&K Financial Code, directives of the Finance Department and above all recommendations made by the Comptroller and Auditor General of India in its numerous reports about financial matters in Jammu and Kashmir”, sources said.
They further said, “the supreme audit institution of the country has on many occasions laid stress on checking the practice of parking of funds in the bank accounts by the Government departments so that funds released for the particular scheme or project are utilized well in time for providing benefit to the targeted population”.
Even on diversion of funds the State has received sharp criticism from the CAG a number of times but the latest observations of the Finance Department have made it clear that no action has been taken on the findings of the CAG, sources said, adding “the CAG has in almost all the reports about the financial matters of the J&K has pointed out that diversion of funds is a clear testimony of lack of internal controls”.
Rule 2-1(a) of the J&K Financial Code states that every Government servant is personally responsible for the money which passes through his hands and for the prompt record of receipts and payments in the relevant account as well as for the correctness of the account in every respect.
While pointing towards this Rule, sources said, “instead of issuing one after another circular expressing concern over non-adherence to the J&K Financial Code, the Government should start initiating action against the erring officers so as to have deterrent effect”, adding “unless this aspect is given serious attention the situation in not going to improve even in future”.
It is pertinent to mention here that even last month the Financial Commissioner Finance Department has conveyed displeasure over diversion of funds by several departments and accordingly instructions were issued for initiating necessary corrective measures.