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CAG flags off accounting lapses in US mission

Flagging off "serious inaccuracies" in accounts of India's Consulate General in Houston, government auditor CAG on Friday said there were "fictitious payment vouchers" of about Rs 2.3 crore and some unaccounted with drawls between March 2012 and February 2013.



New Delhi: Flagging off "serious inaccuracies" in accounts of India's Consulate General in Houston, government auditor CAG on Friday said there were "fictitious payment vouchers" of about Rs 2.3 crore and some unaccounted with drawls between March 2012 and February 2013.

"The Consulate General of India, Houston, USA prepared fictitious payment vouchers of USD 3,72,632 and receipt challans of USD 3,62,172 (about Rs 2.17 crore) and accounted these in its monthly accounts submitted to the Ministry (of External Affairs)," said a CAG report tabled in Parliament on Friday.

There were withdrawals of USD 69,356 and deposits of USD 39,266 without routing through the cash book, it said.

"The accounts of the Consulate suffered from serious inaccuracies which was fraught with the risk of short accounting of receipts and unaccounted withdrawals," it said.

The CAG report was based on the audit scrutiny of records for period between March 2012 to February 2013.

The Consulate admitted that creation of artificial vouchers to tally the cash balances of cash book with that of bank statement was not in order, it said.

Besides, CAG has said the Consulate General of India, Atlanta, procured computer hardware or software, office equipment and furniture worth Rs 1.18 crore in three separate purchases in violation of rules and without following fair and reasonable procedure.

A scrutiny of records (April 2013) of the Atlanta consulate revealed that the post made procurement of goods during August and September 2012 amounted to a total of Rs 1.61 crore.

The procurement of goods were carried out on the basis of sanction of funds given by the Ministry on July 6, 2012.

The report said that the Ministry of External Affairs needs to ensure that the personnel entrusted with financial responsibilities in Missions and ports are imparted adequate training and exposure to rules and procedure. 

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