Prime Minister of India Sh. Narendra Modi has attended/ addressed the First ‘Audit Day’/ ‘Lekha Pariksha Diwas’ 2021 celebrations and has also unveiled the statue of Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel at the premises of CAG Office in New Delhi.
Addressing the gathering, PM Modi said that CAG not just keeps track of nations accounts but also does value addition in productivity and efficiency, therefore deliberations on the Audit Day and related programmes are part of our improvement and improvisation. CAG is an institution that has grown in importance and has created a legacy with passage of time.
He also paid tributes to Mahatma Gandhi, Sardar Patel and Babasaheb Ambedkar and said that these great leaders taught us how to set big goals and achieve them.
He said there was a time when auditing in the country was looked upon with apprehension and dread. ‘CAG vs Government’, had become the common thought of our system. But, today this mindset has changed. Today audit is being considered as an important part of value addition. Further, he commented that earlier, due to lack of transparency in the banking sector, various wrong practices were followed. The result was that the NPAs of the banks kept increasing and the NPAs were brushed under the carpet. However, now the truth of the previous governments is in front of the country with complete honesty. We will find the solutions only when we recognize the problems”, he said.
PM Modi said “today we are making such a system in which the thinking of ‘Sarkar Sarvam’ i.e. the interference of the government, is decreasing, and your work is also getting easier”. This is in accordance with ‘Minimum Government Maximum Governance’. “Contactless customs, automatic renewals, faceless assessments, online applications for service delivery. All these reforms have ended the unnecessary interference of the government”, he added.
PM Modi expressed happiness that CAG has overcome the image of a meddlesome busybody fumbling with files. He noted that “CAG has changed rapidly by adopting modern procedures. Today you are using advanced analytics tools, geo spatial data and satellite imagery”.
PM Modi also pointed out, while talking about the biggest epidemic of the century, that the country’s fight against COVID-19 has also been extraordinary. Today we are running the world’s largest COVID vaccination program. Just a few weeks ago, the country crossed the milestone of 100 crore vaccine doses, he informed. He suggested that CAG may study the practices that emerged during this great fight.
Last but not the least, he concluded with the remarks that in olden times, information was transmitted through stories, as was written. But today in the 21st century, data is information, and in the coming times our history will also be seen and understood through data. In the future, data will dictate history.