The Governor of Bihar has been told that his accounts are not in order. The state's Accountant General, who reports to the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) has, in an audit of his expenses, objected to the expenditure incurred by Governor Devanand Konwar from January 2009 to March 2012.
The report, submitted to the Governor's secretariat in the last week of June says that the Governor made several trips within the country that were not sanctioned, as required, by the President of the country. The report says the Governor should refund the state a total of Rs 1.48 crore. This includes, according to the report, compensation for trips which had been green lit but which the Governor allegedly extended.
The audit report also pointed out there were five staff members who were recruited on contract for the Governor's office without advertising the posts or following the prescribed budgets. These staffers include VS Giri Reddy who serves as an advisor to Governor. In three years, Rs 19, 86,975 was spent on these salaries.
During 2009-12, the audit alleges that the Governor sanctioned approved applications for Rs one lakh each from his "Discretionary Grant" - of these, five were from his home state of Assam and two from Bihar. The payments were made through bank drafts. The auditors were not presented with receipts from the recipients, nor were personal account numbers listed in their records. Therefore, the report says, the misuse of taxpayers' money cannot be ruled out. The Governor's discretionary fund is meant to be used for causes like social welfare and charity. He can grant from discretionary funds up to Rs 10 lakh in a financial year.
The Special Secretary to the Governor told the auditors that the payments were made at the discretion of the latter.
On other charges, the Governor's office said that the findings of the audit are being scrutinised and that an appropriate reply will be drafted and delivered to the Accountant General's office in the next few days.