Headed by senior Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge, the first meeting of the newly constituted Public Accounts Committee (PAC) kicked off with Kharge expressing the pressing need for ‘cooperation of all’ and a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) member stressing on the crucial need to conduct a CAG audit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s developmental schemes including Swachh Bharat, Jan Dhan Yojana and Smart City.
In a report published by the Indian Express, BJP MP Nishikant Dubey asked CAG Shashi Kant Sharma to conduct a performance appraisal of some of the schemes launched by the central government including Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan, Ganga rejuvenation plan, Jan Dhan Yojana, Smart City, Skill India Mission and Mudra Yojana. Complementing the way PAC meeting was held, Biju Janata Dal (BJD) leader B Mahtab said it showed how the PAC functions in a non-partisan manner.
As per PTI, the CAG is likely to submit its reports on railway finance, the crop insurance scheme of the Agriculture Ministry and the functioning of the National Rural Health Mission in the upcoming monsoon session.
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The report further stated the first PAC sitting also had demands for CAG examination of the impact of the UPA law of 2013 on land acquisition and implementation of the Food Security Act in the past two years. The discussion also pointed out the issue of misuse of tax provisions by the trusts.
As it is the key finance committee in the country, Kharge pointed out that all the members from different political parties must work with a spirit of cooperation and move towards making the stature of the panel stronger in the years to come. Kharge’s remarks were on the grounds that unlike other financial committees in the country, PAC can submit any report only if there is an overall accord within members and not with any dissent note.