The role of the financial advisor in the bidding process, purchases through GeM will be discussed at tomorrow’s meeting

Is financial advisor approval required for purchases through Government e Marketplace? Should they have a mandate in the Ministry of Finance before being assigned to other ministries? Can secretaries of ministries make decisions on certain matters independently? These are some of the questions that will be discussed at the financial advisors conference on August 23, News18 has learned.

Last month, News18 reported that the Department of Finance was reviewing the roles and structure of integrated financial advisers (IFAs) to assess any changes that may be needed to the existing system – a decision that stemmed from the delicate balance between financial advisers required. maintain in the performance of their duties. An internal panel has been created within the Ministry of Finance to examine this aspect.

Government officials familiar with the matter told News18 that as part of the exercise, a positive list and a negative list will be prepared.

While the positive list will contain issues that will need to be submitted to the financial advisor for approval, the negative list does not need to be managed by the financial advisor. Ministries were asked to prepare the lists for further discussion at the conference.

A senior government official told News18 that there have been complaints about IFAs raising requests in batches and failing to meet deadlines for submitting comments. “These are also among the issues to be discussed at the meeting, including setting deadlines for officials to respond and enforce them as well,” the official said.

Another government official said the conference will also see discussions on the involvement of FAs in reviewing and approving tenders in key procurement processes. This would include discussions on the separation of departments where the IFA should scrutinize tender issues, those where such scrutiny is only required for certain tenders, and those where it may not be required for be involved.

Other issues, which could be discussed at the conference, are the reversal of an IFA decision at a later stage and the design of common training material for financial advisers and other staff. of the department and the guarantee of constructive suggestions from the financial advisers on the proposals on which they do not agree.

As previously reported, the Finance Secretary, TV Somanathan, had described the role of the financial adviser as sensitive and delicate and said that while the financial adviser should ensure compliance with the canons of financial ownership and financial rules, the civil servant should also support the department or ministry (it is affected) in its policies to achieve administrative objectives.

The conference will also see discussions on greater cooperation between financial advisers and secretaries of ministries, even in cases where the former holds additional office.

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Geraldine L. Melton