(See Chapter XIX, paragraph 409)
DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF DISTRICT AND TREASURY OFFICERS IN RESPECT OF TREASURY MATTERS
These rules must not be understood to interfere with, or, in any way, to limit the application of, any rule or order of the Government on the subject. They do not pretend to exhaust the specification of the duties of District and Treasury Officers in treasury matters.
ADuties and Responsibilities of District Officers
1. A District Officer is primarily responsible to the Government for the due accounting for all moneys received and disbursed, and for the safe custody of cash, notes, stamps, opium, securities and other Government property.
2. Government have repeatedly ruled that the appointment of a subordinate to the immediate charge of a Treasury in no way relieves a District Officer from responsibility. This responsibility extends not only to the security of the cash balance, stamps and opium and the immediate detection of any irregular practice on the part of the subordinates, but also to the correctness of the returns and the punctuality of their submission, and to the implicit obedience of the Treasury Officer to the instructions issued by the Accountant General and the Currency Officer.
District officers should remember that, when an irregularity of any kind is brought to their notice by the Accountant General, nothing but a report on their own knowledge, after personal investigation, can be considered satisfactory. It is not enough for them to pass on the explanation of a subordinate; reports prepared in this manner have more than once by lulling suspicion led to greater irregularity afterwards.
3. A District Officer is bound to satisfy himself, by examination, once in the first six months of each financial year and once in the second six months (on a date on which he personally verifies the cash balance) with an interval of not less than four months between each verification
(i) that the actual stock of stamps (both under double and single locks) and opium and securities corresponds with the book balances as well as with the balances of stamps and opium shown in the treasury plus and minus memo, a certificate to this effect being noted upon the plus-minus memorandum.
(ii) that the stock of the bill and other similar forms, which are intended for use in money transactions, is carefully kept under lock and key and verified with the balances for such forms on the stock book.
The following certificate should be given monthly on the treasury plus and minus memorandum under the signature of the District Officer or other gazetted officer who signs the cash account in his absence :
"Certified that the closing balances of the various accounts included in this memorandum agree with those shown in the various stock registers and accounts maintained in the Treasury".
The District Officer should obtain a similar certificate from officers in charge of Sub-Treasuries or Tahsils, subordinate to him, and also from the officials to whom stamps have been advanced before recording the above certificate. It should not affect the punctual despatch of the memorandum, the fact of non-receipts of any certificate being recorded thereon.
If the stock of stamps, etc., has been verified during the month in consequence of a change in the charge of the district, it is not necessary to verify the stock again on the first day of the following month if due under the rules. In that case, the following should be added to at the end of the certificate:
"at the time the charge of the district was taken over by me."
NOTE Separate accounts should be kept for each officer to whom stamps have been issued and the balance in treasury plus and minus memorandum should be made up as follows:
(1) Balance under double lock.
(2) Do with Chief Cashier.
(3) Do with tahsildars.
(4) Do with other officers to whom stamps have been advanced.
4. The District officer when at headquarters must always verify the District Treasury balance in person and sign the accounts to be rendered to the Accountant General; when he is absent on tour on the first of the month, the duties may be entrusted to the senior gazetted subordinate of the district staff present at headquarters not being officer incharge of the Treasury or to any of his assistants or district deputies in permanent charge of Sub-Divisions. The District Officer should, however, himself perform the duty in person at least once in six months. The fact of the District Officers absence must be distinctly noted in the returns and accounts.
5. The duty of verifying and certifying the monthly cash balance and of signing the. monthly cash accounts must be preformed by the District Officer in person when at headquarters and must, on no account, be delegated to any subordinate officer unless upon the ground of properly attested actual physical inability to perform the duty. The Accountant General is forbidden to accept these returns and accounts under any other signature, save under the circumstances laid down in the previous paragraph.
If neither the District Officer nor any gazetted officer of the district staff other than the Treasury Officer himself is present at headquarters when the accounts are ready for signature, the cash balance may be verified and the accounts signed by the Treasury Officer, but the absence of all other officers as above must be certified on the face of the accounts; and the cash balance should be verified by another officer and reported to the Accountant General as soon as any such officer returns to headquarters.
NOTEWhen the verification of the cash balance takes place on a date other than the first of a month, it should be reported to the Currency Officer in the usual form of cash balance report.
6. The cash account, the second list of payments and the schedules which have already been prepared from day to day, and vouchers supporting them, should be despatched to the Accountant General on the fifth day of the following month (the first list with vouchers and schedules should already have been despatched on the 13th of the month). The Government shall view with severe displeasure any avoidable delay on the part of any District Officer in the despatch of his first and second list of monthly payments with schedules and vouchers: also of the cash balance report and the cash account with schedules and papers complete.
7. The tahsil balances must be verified once a year by a gazetted officer and where Sub-Divisional Treasuries are in the charge of gazetted officers, the District Officer should verify the balances during his winter tour. District Officers should also see that the Sub-Treasuries are regularly inspected twice every financial year by the District Treasury Officers.
8. The District Officer should be particularly careful, when assuming or making over charge of a District, to see that the stock (stamps, opium, etc.) is thoroughly verified and the certificate which is required from a relieving officer showing the state of the cash, stamps and opium balances, should be invariably despatched to the Accountant General on the same day the charge is transferred
9. The procedure required in verifying a cash balance by counting is explained in detail in the Central Treasury Rules. It will be observed that only one bag of coins taken at random need be weighed. The District Officer is required to count every note of Rs. 100 or more in value with his own hand. In addition to following the procedure explained in the aforesaid rules, the District Officer should also satisfy himself of the correctness of the totals of the cash balance report and in the cash-book or the registers from which he verifies the cash balance.
10. A quarterly certificate should be entered on the register of deposit receipts by every District Officer or by a senior gazetted officer of the district staff not being the officer in charge of the Treasury, selected by the District Officer for the purpose, that he has personally and carefully examined the register, and that the entries are made with the utmost care and regularity.
The examination is not intended to be menchanical, and to secure only that all necessary entries are made and initialed without fail at the time of the transactions, but also that no moneys are unnecessarily placed in deposit or allowed to remain there without good cause.
11. If the embezzlement or loss of public money, stamps or opium should occur in Treasury, immediate notice should be sent to the Accountant General, and a report submitted to the Government through the Commissioner of the Division. As soon as possible afterwards, a detailed report of the circumstances specifying the nature and extent of the loss and showing the errors or neglect of rules by which such loss was rendered possible, and the prospects of effecting a recovery must also be sent under the signature of the District Officer to the Accountant General in order to enable him to report the case for the information of Government.
B Treasury Officers
Of the particular matters, as distinguished from the general conduct of treasury business and exact observance of all the rules affecting his duties in which the special personal intervention of the Treasury Officer is required, the following may be specified :
(i) He is required to verify the balance in the hand of the Chief Cashier roughly every evening.
(ii) He is required to observe certain precautions in taking out money from double-locks.
(iii) He is required to examine the daily accounts of the previous day with the chalans and vouchers of the Head-quarter Treasury and the daily Sub-Treasury and Tahsil accounts, and to satisfy himself that each item of charge is supported by its proper voucher; that every item of each chalan and of each tahsil daily account is embodied in its proper schedule; that the totals of all the registers are correctly entered in the cash-book; that the additions and deductions indicated in the accountants balance-sheet are correct; that the result agrees with the balance-sheet of the Chief Cashier; and lastly, to sign the two cash-books and the two balance-sheets in token of their correctness and good order.
(iv) He is required to observe certain precautions before signing the Chief Cashiers daily balance-sheet.
(v) He is required to initial each entry in the pension registers and on the reverse of both portions of the Pension Payment Orders.
(vi) He is personally responsible for any payment of pension wrongly made.
(vii) He is required to initial each entry in the deposit registers, and to see that no item is credited as a deposit save under formal orders of competent authority, and also if the amount could be credited to some known head in the Government accounts, to represent the matter accordingly to the court or authority ordering its acceptance.
(viii) He is required to observe certain precautions before paying cheques drawn by the disbursing officers of Government.
(ix) He is required to see that on vouchers written in a language other than English or Hindi, a brief abstract is endorsed in English or Hindi.
(x) He is required to satisfy himself, before despatch of the list of payments and schedules, that the necessary vouchers are all attached. He is expected to check the schedules with the vouchers at intervals during the month.
(xi) He is required to take special care to see that receipt stamps are so defaced that they cannot be used again.
(xii) to (xvi)(Deleted)
(xvii) He is required to see that receipts for the money received on account of sale of service stamps are always given upon a printed form entirely filled up by the clerk of the Treasury, and that such stamps are sold only to Government officials on a written application and not to officials employed under local fund committees or to government officials in capacities connected with such funds.
(xviii) He is required to recover any amount disallowed by the Accountant General as unauthorized, promptly, and without listening to any objection or protest, and to refuse to pay in future any such amount until the Accountant General withdraws his objection.
(xix) He is prohibited from paying a gazetted officer an increased or a changed rate of salary unless the bill is either preaudited by the Accountant General or is accompanied by a letter of the Accountant General authorizing the amounts to be drawn.
(xx) Before paying any bill drawn by a self-drawing officer, he is required to see that the deductions, as prescribed under rules or orders, have been made.
(xxi) He is required to use special precautions for satisfying himself of the identity of the applicant for payment of a bill drawn by a person not in the service of the Government and in all doubtful cases to take the order of the District Officer.
(xxii) He is required to grant last-pay certificates in certain circumstances, and must not pay salary to an officer to whom he has granted a last-pay certificate, unless the certificate is first surrendered.
(xxiii) He is required to prohibit erasures in any account, register, or schedule, or in the cash-book; to verify and initial every correction in them and to take special care with all vouchers and accounts showing sign, of alteration, and if such documents be frequently received from any office, to draw the attention of the head of the office to the matter.
(xxiv) He is to make no payment under any circumstances on voucher or order signed by a clerk, instead of the head of an office, although, in the absence of the latter, the clerk be in the habit of signing letters for him. Nor may he pay any moneys on a voucher or order signed only with a rubber stamp or facsimile stamp.
(xxv) He is not to honour a claim which, on the face of it is disputable, but to refer the claimant to the Accountant General.
(xxvi) He is required to see that a notice is posted in a conspicuous place in the office of the hour at which the Treasury closes for receipt and payment of money, and that the required notices regarding the encashment of currency notes, the supply of small coin and copper and the like, are exhibited conspicuously in place where the public enter freely, and that no favouritism is shown in the conveniences which the Treasury can offer.
(xxvii) He is required to acknowledge personally remittances of all sums of Rs. 500 and more.
(xxviii) He is required to verify at the end of each year the balances at credit of each local and municipal fund and monthly the receipts and disbursements of officers of the Military, the Railway, and the Public Works and Irrigation Departments and of Postmasters.
As the District Officers delegate and representative, the Treasury Officer is responsible primarily to the District Officer for the right discharge of his duty. The District Officer expects from the Treasury Officer a thorough observance of all prescribed treasury rules and strict attention to all the details of the daily routine of treasury work. The Treasury Officer is required to satisfy himself of the accuracy of every claim before authorizing payment, and must follow strictly the rules prescribed for his guidance, as he will be held personally responsible for all erroneous or irregular payments. He is jointly responsible with the District Officer for the safe custody of the cash, notes and other Government property; but in the event of any loss or embezzlement, if it be shown that the District Officer has taken every ordinary precaution, and has neglected none of the particular duties imposed upon him by the rules, and has not relaxed the sustained supervision and control over the working of the treasury business which Government expects from him, and that the loss or embezzlement has occurred solely through the carelessness or dishonesty of the Treasury Officer, he will not be held responsible. The Treasury Officer will not be held responsible in the event of any loss or defalcation, if he can show that he has strictly observed the rules prescribed for his guidance in each branch of his duties and that he has enforced their observance on his subordinates.