The financial management of any organization must have a prudent financial system backed by sound and effective accounting procedures and internal controls. A well-designed and well managed accounting system helps ensure proper control over funds.
Accounting policies and procedures are designed to compile accounts fulfilling legal/procedural requirements that govern financial control. Accounts are an integral part of financial management of activities. On the basis of accounts, the Government determines the shape of its monetary and fiscal policies.
STRUCTURE OF ACCOUNTS AND FLOW OF FUNDS
The accounts of Government are kept in three parts: –
- Consolidated Funds of India
- Contingency Funds of India
- Public Account
CONSOLIDATED FUND OF INDIA
All revenues received by the Government by way of taxes like Income Tax, Central Excise, Customs and other receipts flowing to the Government in connection with the conduct of Government business i.e. Non-Tax Revenues are credited into the Consolidated Fund constituted under Article 266 (1) of the Constitution of India. Similarly, all loans raised by the Government by issue of Public notifications, treasury bills (internal debt) and loans obtained from foreign governments and international institutions (external debt) are credited into this fund. All expenditure of the government is incurred from this fund and no amount can be withdrawn from the Fund without authorization from the Parliament.
CONTINGENCY FUND OF INDIA
The Contingency Fund of India records the transactions connected with Contingency Fund set by the Government of India under Article 267 of the Constitution of India. The corpus of this fund is Rs. 50 crores. Advances from the fund are made for the purposes of meeting unforeseen expenditure which are resumed to the Fund to the full extent as soon as Parliament authorizes additional expenditure. Thus, this fund acts more or less like an imprest account of Government of India and is held on behalf of President by the Secretary to the Government of India, Ministry of Finance, Department of Economic Affairs.
In the Public Account constituted under Article 266 (2) of the Constitution, the transactions relate to debt other than those included in the Consolidated Fund of India. The transactions under Debt, Deposits and Advances in this part are those in respect of which Government incurs a liability to repay the money received or has a claim to recover the amounts paid. The transactions relating to `Remittance’ and `Suspense’ shall embrace all adjusting heads. The initial debits or credits to these heads will be cleared eventually by corresponding receipts or payments. The receipts under Public Account do not constitute normal receipts of Government. Parliamentary authorization for payments from the Public Account is therefore not required.
(Reference: Ministry of Commerce and Industry)