The Delhi high court on Monday gave the go ahead to the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) to audit accounts of private telecom companies. However, the same rule may not apply to private discoms.
The Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government in Delhi has asked the CAG to audit accounts of the discoms, but experts say the telecom rule will not apply to them as there is no revenue sharing between discoms and the government. While the government has asked the auditor to complete the exercise in three months, the discoms are yet to receive any intimation from the CAG.
“The process takes some time. The CAG will evaluate various aspects and then write to the discoms for conducting an audit,” said a senior government official.
The discoms plan to make their next move after receiving the intimation from the CAG. Also, the matter of auditing the books of discoms is expected to come up on January 22. “We are waiting for the verdict,” a discom official said.
Experts in the power department also said that the telecom order does not apply to discoms.
“There is a revenue-sharing model on which the telecom companies and the government work.
But the model is not applicable for discoms,” said Shakti Sinha, former power secretary of Delhi.
Sinha criticised the AAP for the power subsidy, saying it is a big joke.
The CAG in 2002 made it clear to discoms that it would not audit their accounts. “The discoms are private operators and under the Companies Act do not come under the ambit of the CAG,” said a senior officer of the power department.
Former chairman of the Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission Bijender Singh, who initiated the process of a CAG audit of the discoms, said: “The CAG, if given a chance to audit, will only be able to audit whatever is made available. The CAG can neither search nor summon.”