Indian Audit and Accounts Service (IA&AS) – 2020
Indian Audit and Accounts Service (IA&AS) is one of the Group A category civil service associated with the government of India. This is purely a central government service, concerned with the Comptroller and Auditor General of India. The executive wing of the government has no direct powers to interfere in the functioning of this service.
This wing has four essential functionalities. As the name suggests, this service conducts audits of the central and state governments and also the public sector units. It also exclusively takes care of conducting audits purely at the state government level too.
The audits are high-level processes and are specialised for those who have great responsibility and agility towards work and require working under high-pressure environments. Along with auditing, they are also responsible for account keeping and account maintaining tasks that are interrelated with state governments.
For getting selected to this service, candidates need to apply for the UPSC civil service examination that is an all India exam conducted every year by the government of India. Aspiring candidates need to apply through the application form available for the civil services exam with all relevant details.
Upon qualifying, they will be selected to write the preliminary exam. Candidates successful in this round will move on to the mains examination, and further, if they are eligible for the next round after the screening, they will get to attempt the interview. Following the interview, there will be a selection list based on merit order.
Candidates who score very good ranking will get to choose the services of their choice.
Indian Audit and Accounts Service (IA&AS) – Training Offered to Probationary Officers
The eligibility conditions to apply for the IAAS exam are common as that of other civil service exams. Upon successful selection of the candidate in this service, they are posted to the National Academy of Audit and Accounts (Shimla). Candidates are supposed to undergo a probationary tenure of 1.5 years in this institute, which will deem them fit for joining duty as officers.
The training module at this institute is carried out in two phases, namely phase 1 and phase 2.
- Phase 1 – Probationers are given elaborate lectures and imparted sound theoretical knowledge of fundamental concepts. Some of the topics covered as part of this training curriculum include classes on accounting and auditing. Specialised theoretical knowledge briefing for carrying out government audits, commercial audits, and maintaining accounts of state governments are imparted through a series of lectures. Expert talks and lectures that facilitate students to apply the knowledge practically yare given out, so that future officers are prepared to serve the country with their duties in the right manner.
- Phase 2 – After completing the module of training 1, probationers are now elevated to a higher level of learning cum training facility. At this level, probationers get to learn and know how theoretical knowledge is better applied in practical scenarios and circumstances. The functionality of their role and job is well understood in this phase. Along with curriculum learning, probationers are given practical exposure through tie-ups with RBI, National institute of public finance and policy, bureau of parliamentary studies, and IIM, Lucknow. The phase two not just concludes with hands-on training at these government agencies. The module offers an intensive training program in association with the London School of Economics and Political science, where they are imparted a good hold and experience on international accounting and auditing regimes.
Posts Offered after training
The IA&AS officers are generally posted in big metropolitan cities, Tier A cities, and state capitals. For the entry-level probationers, the first posting is commonly that of the Assistant accountant general post. Upon promotion, they will get a higher posting as Accountant General. We present the full hierarchy here:
- Deputy Accountant General (DAG)/Deputy Director (DD) – mainly at field offices.
- Senior DAG/Director – upon promotion from the previous role as DAG
- Accountant General (AG) or Principal Director (PD) post
- Principal Accountant General (PAG) or Director General (DG) post.
- Additional Deputy CAG post
- Deputy CAG post.
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Roles & Responsibilities of Indian Audit and Accounts Service (IA&AS) Officers
Different cadre officers serving as IAAS officers get to serve and work in different parts and locations of the world. Since their functionality is independent of the executive wing, they are directly under the supervision of the comptroller and auditor general of India. Some of their prominent roles and responsibilities include:
- Serving as IAAS officers at various levels in Indian state capitals.
- Serving different tenures as IAAS officers in collaboration with the government of India. Physical locations of discharging their duties at overseas locations could include the CAG at London, Washington, Kuala Lumpur, and Rome, New York, etc.
- Auditing Indian embassies located in foreign shores.
- Conducting audits of various united nations offices around the globe and in India.
- Indian government departments and IAAD.
- Financial advisers and executive advisors to various IAS officers and their higher cadres and high level administrative officers.
- Various project-wise and government deputations to World Bank and IMF as IA&AS officers.
Indian Audit and Accounts Service (IA&AS) – Grade & Salary
The pay scale of various posts in the IA&AS service is grade dependent. Every grade has its own set of basic and gross pay scales, with additional benefits and perks attached. Below, we summarize these details for your reference:
- Junior Grade Assistant Accountant General, the pay is between INR 8000-275-13500
- Senior Grade Assistant Director, the pay is between INR 10000-325-15200
- Junior Grade Deputy Accountant General, the pay range is between INR 12300-375-16500
- Senior Deputy Accountant General, the pay range is between INR 14300-400-18300
- Senior Administrative Grade Accountant General, the pay range is between INR 18400-500-22400
- Principal Director, pay range is between INR 22400-525-24500
- Director General, pay is between INR 24050-650-26000
- Deputy Comptroller and Auditor General, salary is fixed at INR 26000.
Pay numbers are subject to revision from time to time. Candidates are always advised to check the official website for the latest information on updates regarding salary, perks, grade pay, and other benefits.)
Indian Audit and Accounts Service (IA&AS) – Career Prospects
- In general, IAAS officers have more independence and liberty in their work area. The main reason for this is their work role being independent of any formal attachment with the executive body of the government wing.
- They have to report to the comptroller and auditor general of India directly.
- It is one of the oldest and most lucrative services in India till date. Many candidates seek this service as it gives plenty of exposure across borders, both within the country and offshore deputations and assignments.
- London, Kuala Lumpur, and Washington also have the CAG office where personnel from IA&AS will be deputed depending on their project assignments.
- Their work has pan India importance because they are involved in the creation of large audit reports, which are congregated and sent later for seeking the president’s approval and sanction on various matters.
- High level audit reports are tabled in the parliament; thus, their work comes with a high level of responsibility and assurance of quality.
- Balanced work assignments of auditing and account keeping mark the hallmark of IAAS officers.
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