CAG report commands respect and cannot be brushed aside but it cannot be the final word on an issue, the Supreme Court said on Thursday while noting that the auditor’s findings cannot be gospel truth as it is subject to scrutiny by Parliament.
A bench of justices K S Radhakrishnan and Dipak Misra said: “The CAG’s report is always subject to parliamentary debates and it is possible that PAC can accept the ministry’s objection to the CAG report or reject the report of the CAG.
The CAG, indisputably is an independent constitutional functionary. However, it is for Parliament to decide whether after receiving the report to make its comments on it,” the court said.
The bench made the observations while rejecting CAG views on Cairn-Vedanta deal, saying that “it is factually and legally incorrect and cannot be accepted”.
The bench analysed various provisions pertaining to CAG functioning and said, “We have come across several instances where considerable reliance has been placed on the CAG Report projecting it as gospel truth”.
The court’s remark assumes significance in the wake of the recent controversy over CAG’s figure of the estimated loss to public exchequer due to coal blocks and 2G spectrum allocation scams.