March 30:In a significant reform, aimed at ensuring transparency in maintaining State Accounts and all transactions, the State Administrative Council (SAC) in its meeting held yesterday under the chairmanship of Governor N.N. Vohra, approved implementation of Civil Accounting System in place of Cheque Drawing System in Public Works Department, Public Health Engineering Department, Irrigation and Flood Control Department, Power Development Department and other Cheque Drawing Units.
The meeting was attended by the Advisors to Governor, Shri Parvez Dewan and Shri Khurshid Ahmed Ganai; Chief Secretary Shri B.R. Sharma; Financial Commissioner, Planning and Development Department, Shri B.B.Vyas; and Finance Secretary Shri Navin K. Choudhary presented details of the proposal before the SAC.
It was informed by the Finance Secretary that the present system of cheque drawing by the Works divisions / units, in the absence of pre-audit at the level of Treasuries, adversely affects the transparency of transactions having been executed as per the codal provision and, besides, also affects true and accurate position of the State finances and the accounts.
This is evidenced by the huge outstanding balances under Stock Suspense, Material at Site, Advance Payments, Temporary Advances, Cash Imprest and Misc. Public Works Advances which get accumulated in the books of various divisions of Public Works Department, Power Development Department, Forest department etc.
This has also been repeatedly pointed out by the Accountant General while conducting the audit of these divisions.
In the aforesaid context, the SAC decided that in order to introduce transparency in the accounting system, the cheque system shall be abolished and the civil system of accounting shall be extended to the Works/Forest Divisions and other cheque drawing units in the State.
In the first phase, the Civil system of Accounting shall be implemented only in respect of Revenue expenditure w.e.f. 01.04.2016.
In the second phase the Civil system of Accounting shall be extended to Capital/works expenditure w.e.f. 01.04.2017.