Indian Audits and Accounts Service
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Indian Audit and Accounts Service (IAAS) is an Indian Central Government service, free of control from any executive authority, under the Comptroller and Auditor General of India. The officers of the Indian Audit and Accounts Department serve in an audit managerial capacity. IAAS is responsible for auditing the accounts of the Union and State governments and public sector organizations, and for maintaining the accounts of State governments.It role is somewhat similar to the US GAO and National Audit Office (United Kingdom).
The service can be divided into officers looking after state accounts, Union accounts and the officers at Headquarters. The state accounts and audit offices are headed by Accountants General or Principal Accountants General. They are functionally equivalent; only the designations vary. Major states have three Principal Accountants General (PAsG) or Accountants General (AsG), each heading Accounts and Entitlement (i.e., compiling state accounts, maintaining pension accounts, loan accounts, etc.), General and Social Sector Audit (GSSA) or Economic and Revenue Sector Audit (ERSA).
The equivalent officers at the Central level are Principal Directors (PDs) or Directors General (DsG). The PDs, DsG, AsG and PAsG report to Additional Deputy CAG (also called ADAI, for historical reasons). The Deputy CAGs are the highest ranked officers in the service.
After training, the Officer Trainees are posted as Deputy Accountants General (DAsG) or Deputy Directors (DDs). Subsequent to their promotion, they become Senior Deputy Accountants General (Sr.DAsG) or Directors. All officers below the rank of AG/PD are also called Group Officers as they are generally in charge of a group in the office.
Recruitment and training
Recruitment to the IAAS is through the joint competitive examinations (the Civil Services Examination and through promotion from the subordinate cadre. Once recruited to IAAS, the directly recruited officers are trained mainly at the National Academy of Audit and Accounts, Shimla, Himachal Pradesh, India. The training is split into two phases. Phase-1 involves giving a theoretical background to the students on concepts of Government and commercial auditing and accounting. Phase-2 gives emphasis on practical training. The training involves modules where Officer Trainees are attached to the Reserve Bank of India, the National Institute of Public Finance and Policy, the Planning Commission, the Bureau of Parliamentary Studies and the Indian Institute of Management, Lucknow. The Officer Trainees are also given an international exposure through attachment with London School of Economics and Political Science.
Sanctioned strength of IA&AS Cadre (As on 01.08.2009) Deputy Comptroller and Auditor General: 5 Additional Deputy Comptroller and Auditor General: 5 Principal Accountant General: 26 Senior Administrative Grade: 107 Junior Administrative Grade: 161 (Selection Grade 80 and Ordinary Grade 81) Senior Time Scale: 256 Junior Time Scale: 136
For carrying out diverse functions, the Comptroller & Auditor General of India is assisted by one of India's oldest services – the Indian Audit & Accounts Service, whose officers are deployed in offices spread throughout the country besides three overseas offices located at London, Kuala Lumpur and Washington.
IA&AS officers mainly go abroad to conduct embassy audit i.e. audit of Embassies and High Commissions of India situated all over the world. They are also deputed regularly to conduct audit of international institutions like UN.