A petition has been filed with the Supreme Court to increase the number of exam centres for the CA (Chartered Accountants) exams and the stay on the opt-out option for the same. The exams are scheduled to be held between 29th July 2020 and 16th August 2002 amid COVID19 pandemic, for which 4.67 lakh students have filled the registration form. The hearing of the petition is to be held within a couple of days.
On 25th June 2020, Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) issued a notification that read that the petition is a violation of the basic fundamental rights of the students. The petition said that the institute had decided to conduct the exams for the May 2020 session from 29th July 2020 to 16th August 2020 but now they launched an opt-out option for the students stating the ICAI will cancel and transfer the registration of such students from the current (May 2020) session to the next (November 2020) session.
“The ‘opt-out’ option discriminates between those underprivileged group of CA students/ aspirants, who are living in remote areas of the country or living in the containment zones and thus are slated to lose one precious ‘examination attempt’ by choosing ‘opt-out’ option amidst ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, as compared to that privileged group of students/ aspirants, who are living in big cities/ green zones and thus they have no problem in appearing in the said examination.
The student who choose opt-out will be deprived of the May 2020 attempt, as compared to other groups of students who go in for ‘opt-in’ option. Hence, the petitioner is praying this court to forthwith quash and set aside the aforesaid Important Announcement dated June 15.” the petition said.
The petition is further filed to seek the decision on increasing the number of exam centres to make sure that each district of the country should have at least one exam centre if not more. The increase will benefit the 4.67 lakh aspirants who are scheduled to write the exams in approx 259 centres throughout the country and 5 centres overseas.