New Delhi: Facing questions over jurisdiction, Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) Vinod Rai has said that the watchdog has got "unfettered" powers to conduct 'performance audit' which includes going into issues like 2G spectrum allocation and profit-sharing in petroleum.
Referring to the controversy surrounding gas allocation from KG-D6 basin, he said the audit in this case was done under the "aegis" of the Oil and Petroleum Ministry and made it clear that CAG was seeking a response from private operators like Reliance through the Ministry without "entertaining" them directly.
"In a letter issued in June 2006, the Finance Ministry clearly states that a performance audit is totally within the scope of the CAG's audit and that he should have unfettered access to records," Rai told.
"Now, whether it is 2G spectrum allocation or profit-sharing in petroleum, these are deemed performance audits because public goods have been made available for a private partner to exploit," he underlined.
The remarks assume significance as questions have been raised over the jurisdication of CAG recently, with even Prime Minister Manmohan Singh saying two days back that "never in the past has the CAG decided to comment on a policy issue. It should limit the office to the role defined in the Constitution."