Audit of Telecom Companies
Director General Audit, Post & Telegraph had suggested that since the Private Service Providers (PSPs) are resisting to submit their books of accounts for C&AG audit, the licence agreement between DoT and the PSPs may be amended in conformity with TRAI Rules 2002, enabling C&AG to audit PSPs in clear and plain manner. Director General Audit, Post & Telegraph has subsequently mentioned that with the allocation of 3G Spectrum lined up to start from September 2010, amendment to the existing license conditions to provide for roll out obligation of 3G services, payment of additional spectrum charges etc. are imperative. In view of the above, the Director General Audit, Post & Telegraph has reiterated for incorporating the enabling clauses for CAG audit in the licence terms and conditions of Telecom Operators.
However, the issue regarding powers of CAG to Audit accounts of PSPs is sub-judice before judicial foras. Therefore, as per legal advice, any change in the agreement may be considered only after the issue is finally adjudicated upon.
The Ministry of Law & Justice has opined that the CAG has no duty or power to challenge policy decisions taken by the Government.
The above opinion of the Ministry of Law & Justice was conveyed to the Director General Audit, Post & Telegraph.
This information was given by Minister of State for Communications & Information Technology, Shri Sachin Pilot in written reply to a question in Lok Sabha today.