At a time when the government has been saying that the CAG report on Commonwealth Games has to be vetted by Parliament, Public Accounts Committee (PAC), PAC chairman Murli Monohar Joshi lent his weight to the CAG report on Thursday, accusing the Congress and the government of attacking the constitutional institution.
Taking exception to Congress spokesperson Manish Tewari reportedly using the expression peeps, leaks and squeaks for the CAG report, Joshi said that the Congress and government should make it clear if this was their official line.
The Congress should clarify if it agrees with the statement of its spokesperson and, if not, then make it clear as to what action it is going to take,Joshi said.
Manish Tewari responded: It is indeed amusing that the chairperson of the PAC that must be exercising oversight on the reports of the CAG has decided to become the pro bono defence counsel of the CAG. Is this convergence of interests a coincidence or is there is something more to it.
Joshi also countered the line that the CAG was just an auditor and that it had intruded into policy areas: "CAG does not have just the right to do financial audit of the government. CAG is not a chartered accountant. He also conducts compliance and performance audits," he said, adding that the government was afraid of performance audits.
Stressing that accountability and transparency were the hallmark of democracy, Joshi accused the government of attempting to silence the voices that were asking for accountability, saying that Anna Hazare, Ramdev and the CAG
were all sought to be subverted for seeing to make the government accountable.