Some important information about Parliamentary Accounts Committee is:-
Why in news?
- RBI governor Urjit Patel appeared before the committee to brief it on the impact of demonetization.
- A controversy also arose over whether the PAC can summon the Prime Minster.
About Parliamentary Accounts Committee
- It has been in existence from 1921 and was formed under the Government of India Act, 1919.
- It is constituted by the Parliament each year for parliamentary oversight over finances of the government.
- It is a joint committee consisting of 15 members from Lok Sabha and 7 from Rajya Sabha who are elected according to principle of proportional representation by means of the single transferable vote.
- Since 1967, its chairman by convention is selected from the Opposition parties.
- The committee is empowered to call witnesses to give evidence and produce documents required by the committees.
- All the deliberations of the committee are confidential.
- The government submits an Action Taken Report on the recommendations of the PAC which is then laid before the parliament.
Primary Functions of the Committee
- To examine the appropriation accounts and the finance accounts of the Union government and any other account laid before the Lok Sabha.
- In scrutinizing the Appropriation Accounts and the Reports of the Comptroller and Auditor-General thereon, it is the duty of the Committee to satisfy itself:
- That the money shown in the accounts as having been disbursed were legally available for and, applicable to the service or purpose to which they have been applied or charged;
- That the expenditure conforms to the authority which governs it; and
- That every re-appropriation has been made in accordance with the provisions made in this behalf under rules framed by competent authority.
- To examine audit reports of various autonomous and semi-autonomous bodies, the audit of which is conducted by the CAG.
- It considers the justification for spending more or less than the amount originally sanctioned.
- The functions of the Committee extend however, “beyond, the formality of expenditure to its wisdom, faithfulness and economy” and thus the committee examines cases involving losses, nugatory expenditure and financial irregularities.
- The Committee examines cases involving under-assessments, tax-evasion, non-levy of duties, misclassifications etc., identifies the loopholes in the taxation laws and procedures and makes recommendations in order to check leakage of revenue.
For more information:- Current Affairs.