LAHDC Leh, Kargil fail to submit audit since inception: CAG

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Srinagar: Terming it a serious financial irregularity, the Comptroller Auditor General of India (CAG) in its report said that the Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council (LAHDC) of Leh and Kargil have failed to submit their accounts for audit since their inception.

The information was shared by the CAG in a report about the autonomous bodies in both Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh have failed to file their accounts for audit.

According to the report, a copy of which lies with a local news agency, Kashmir News Observer (KNO), both Leh and Kargil Autonomous Hill Development councils have failed to submit accounts for audit since their inception back in 1995-96 and 2004-05.

The report said that the LAHDC, Leh has failed to submit accounts for audit since its inception from 1995-96 although substantial funds are being released to the council and unspent balances at the end of the year remain credited in a non-lapsable fund in the public account of the state.

“The position in respect of LAHDC, Kargil which came into existence in the year 2004-05 is similar and the accounts are in arrears since its inception,” it said.

The CAG said that on-submission/ delay in submission of accounts by these bodies receiving substantial funding from the state budget is a serious financial irregularity persisting for years.

About the bodies who have failed to submit their accounts for audit in Jammu and Kashmir, the CAG said that the Compensatory Afforestation Management and Planning Authority has failed to submit the accounts for the past 10 years, and nothing was granted between the year 2018-19.

The two branches of Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Science and Technology, Kashmir, and Jammu have failed to submit their account for audit for nine and three years, the CAG said.

The other bodies CAG named among the serious financial irregularities include Employees Provident Fund Board, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir State Housing Board, Khadi and Village Industries Board, Building and Other Construction Workers Welfare Board, and State Legal Service Authority.

The CAG maintained that in view of this non-compliance, the audited accounts of these statutory bodies have not so far been presented to the state legislature as required under the statutes under which these bodies were created.

“This has deprived the state legislature of the opportunity to assess their activities and financial performance,” the report reads. (KNO)

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