CA exams: Plea filed in SC seeks opt-out facility, extra attempt, vaccination for students

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As many as 987 students, belonging to 20 states and three union territories, have knocked on the doors of the Supreme Court to seek relief for those appearing in the upcoming cycle of the Chartered Accountancy (CA) examinations.

In a plea placed before the country’s apex court, it is sought that the notification of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) dated 05.06.2021 which doesn’t offer an “opt-out” option be quashed and set aside. The prayer urges for a new notification that provides the desired “opt-out” option for those willing to opt out before and during exam and/or to a further date but before next cycle of November exam and an alternate attempt but before November exam cycle and carry forward all the benefits.

The petition has also sought a direction to the ICAI to give an extra chance/extension, Opt-out option to those students who are appearing for Intermediate and Final Course examination under Old Syllabus in May 2021 cycle and willing to opt out before and during exam and/or to a further date but before next cycle of November exam and an alternate attempt but before November exam cycle and carry forward all the benefits.

READ MORE: ‘Defer exam, increase attempts’: Parents’ body writes to Fin Min, ICAI as CA students raise concerns

It has also prayed that the examination centres be increased so as to provide at least one exam centre in every district of India and conduct exam in a staggered manner.

The petition urged the court for directions to the institute for granting a fresh option to choose exam centre. It also sought arrangement of free transportation and accomodation by ICAI for the students.

Besides, the plea requested the court to give directions to the institute to conduct mandatory free COVID-19 tests of all the students, teachers, invigilators and staff who will be deployed at exam centres. Further, it sought vaccination for all of them as well.

In the detailed plea, the petitioner has also urged for directions to the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) and the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) to formulate and lay down separate, exclusive guidelines for conducting the said CA exams.

“We have moved SC on behalf of CA Aspirants to seek several reliefs for upcoming exams – providing opt out option to all those who are willing to opt out including intermediate and final old course aspirants; to provide opt out option before and during the exam and for an alternate attempt but before November cycle exam. We are also seeking relief for vaccinating students invigilators and other staff before holding exam and making RTPCR test mandatory for everyone before entering exam centre,” petitioner Anubha Shrivastava Sahai said.

“We are also praying for opening more centres at each district and to conduct exams in a staggered manner to avoid overcrowding at exam centre which can turn into super spreaders. We have requested free transport and accommodation facilities near the exam centre, to treat e admit card as E pass for free and safe movement of students in all the zones including containment zone during exam, to make arrangement for one standby centre nearby in case any centre turns into a containment zone. We also pray for framing of guidelines/SOPs for safe conduct of exams by Health ministry and Home Ministry. We seek declaration of results with in a time limit and atleast 7 days before the commencement of next exam. I am hopeful that students will get relief from Hon’ble SC and ICAI will also consider it,” Sahai told India TV.

The CA July Exams 2021 are scheduled to be held from July 5 to July 20, 2021, from 2 pm to 5 pm. Meanwhile, the institute has postponed CA Foundation Examination. The examination will now be conducted from July 24 onwards. The window to change the examination center will open from June 9, 10 am onwards.

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