The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI), the regulator of Accountancy profession in India, celebrated its 62nd Foundation Day today. A function was organized at Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi on July 1, 2010. Deputy Chairman, Rajya Sabha, Shri K.Rehman Khan and Honble Minister of Corporate Affairs, Shri Salman Khurshid were the Guests of Honor. Secretary, Ministry of Corporate Affairs, Shri R.Bandyopadhyay delivered a special address on this occasion.
Starting with a handful of 1700 members, today, the strength of Chartered Accountant fraternity has grown to almost 1,63,000 members. On the education front, the ICAI began with mere 259 students and today almost 6.60 lacs students are part of the ICAI.
At the outset Shri T.Karthikeyan, Secretary, ICAI welcomed the Honble Minister of Corporate Affairs, Shri Salman Khurshid, Secretary, Ministry of Corporate Affairs, Shri R.Bandyopadhyay, Member of the Board, Infosys, CA.T.V.Mohandas Pai, President, ICAI, CA. Amarjit Chopra, Vice President, ICAI, CA.G.Ramaswamy, Past President, ICAI, CA.Ved Jain , CA.(Dr.) Girish Ahuja, Central Council Members of ICAI, the members in the profession and the esteemed guests.
While addressing the gathering Shri Karthikeyan said 1st July has a great significance for the Chartered Accountancy Profession in India, as on this day, in the year 1949 the Chartered Accountants Act was passed by the Parliament. Every year the Institute celebrates this day as CA Day.
In his Presidential address, CA. Amarjit Chopra, President, ICAI welcomed the dignitaries and distinguished gathering and extended his heartfelt thanks to the Honble Minister & Honble Deputy Chairman for their continuous and unrelenting support. The President on behalf of the Council and the entire fraternity said that 1st July is a day for introspection for the CA profession. He said We need to look back on the milestones achieved in last 61 years and make fresh determinations for the future. He further added that the Institute is at the threshold of making history for the periods to come starting from the year 2010-11 which is going to be a remarkable year from CA professions point of view.
He assured the Minister that The Institute will continue to strive for goals that Ministry has set up for it as the strength of the profession lies in our abilities. The Indian Chartered Accountants have succeeded in meeting the rapidly changing demands of the Indian economy in this era of liberalization and globalization. The Institute has been at the forefront in the development of the accountancy profession.
The President added that Any profession stands on 2 legs- ethics and competence and we are sure that in the periods to come the profession which has been doing so well, which has produced the professionals of absolutely world class will continue to do so and our members shall be following the ethical values and of course shall upgrade their skills through Continuous Professional education hours.
He reiterated that the Institute feels committed and is co-partnering various initiatives of Ministry of Corporate Affairs, latest being the convergence of Indian Accounting Standards with International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRSs). He said that ICAI is spearheading this initiative of the Ministry and it has started a massive exercise to train its members in industry as well as in practice. So far, about 1800 members have successfully undergone the training of the IFRS certificate course. Besides this, the ICAI has already conducted several seminars and conferences on IFRSs to discuss various aspects related to convergence. In order to ensure that this process is smooth and meets the stipulated deadlines, the ICAI proposes to launch intensive training workshops in 58 locations across the country.
The President also shared views on the proposed Direct Tax Code that aims to simplify the existing taxation mechanism. He said that this matter is already creating waves in the business and industry circles and the Institute has submitted its view on the Code to attain the twin objectives of canon of equity and revenue growth.
Another major development shared by the President was the enactment of new Companies Bill, 2009 which is in the anvil and is paving way for the Indian corporates to become global players. He further said that disclosure and transparency are two fundamental tenets of the Bill that will serve the interests of the society. The Institute will have to work in unison with the Government to achieve the objective of these proposed legislations.
President also shared a recent initiative taken up by the Institute for the students. He informed that the Institute soon proposes to start the coaching classes for the students through virtual classrooms. To begin with, the classes could be in some of the metros but subsequently the virtual classrooms project will be taken to smaller cities as well.
While delivering the Special address at Vigyan Bhawan, Shri R.Bandyopadhyay, Secretary, Ministry of Corporate Affairs remarked In a rapidly changing world, Accountants have evolved as a professional group who have evolved new concepts and procedures to meet the varied demand made by society on its skills. Chartered Accountants play a significant role in the Corporate World. We are proud of the Institute as it is giving enormous services to the entire corporate sector.
During this age of increasing globalization and inter-dependence of national economies, ICAI has demonstrated its resilience to the changing situation and growing demands. Globalization has accelerated the shift in focus from Numbers to Strategic Thinking, thus metamorphoses the role of accountants as critical members of the management team.
The guest of Honor, Honble Deputy Chairman, Rajya Sabha Shri K.Rehman Khan, remarked The profession of Accountancy in India and the World over is considered as an important organ for establishing financial accountability in every sphere of financial activities. The profession has played a very important role in the economic growth of India during last 60 years. The Institute in over sixty years of its existence has discharged all the roles in an exemplary manner.
He also reiterated In my journey from profession to public service, through politics, my professional skill acquired as a CA student and as Chartered Accountant, has played a major role in my progress. My professional training as a CA has helped me in discharging my duties without fear or favor.
Honble Minister of Corporate Affairs, Shri Salman Khurshid while congratulating the profession remarked Chartered Accountancy is an invaluable and indispensable supportive profession for modern business. Indian Accountancy profession is among the professions that we want the world to look at. The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) is a spiritual home of the entire profession, the guiding spirit and we are very proud of such an outstanding Institution.
The Honble Minister also added We work closely with ICAI and admires the work done by ICAI. We are willing to be the partners and to push your ideas. With an outstanding performance record of ICAI, I would like to see ICAI taking the lead. This is the reason, the Institute is the nodal agency for what I call the accountancy revolution in India. The Minister also added that the Institute should encourage more women to join CA profession as the women intrinsically are better financial controllers.
While delivering the Vote of thanks, CA.G.Ramaswamy, Vice President, ICAI thanked Deputy Chairman, Rajya Sabha, Shri K.Rehman Khan, Honble Minister of Corporate Affairs, Shri Salman Khurshid, Secretary, Ministry of Corporate Affairs, Shri R.Bandyopadhyay and the distinguished gathering.
The Vice President said The future of the profession demands that the expectations of the knowledge economy and the expectations of the stakeholders be merged. He reiterated that this profession has always played an important role in the economic development of the country and will continue to contribute towards nation building. This profession has attained a coveted position as a result of constant pursuit for perfection, integrity, skills and knowledge.
Mr.Ramaswamy also spoke about the path breaking step of implementation of the GST across the country w.e.f April 1, 2011. He reiterated that with the expertise available with the Institute, ICAI can assist the Government in this mammoth and complex task. ICAI will suggest formats to the Government to ensure compliance with GST legislations and avoidance of revenue leakage. ICAI has also chalked out a plan for country wide training at all levels, as soon as the basic design of GST is agreed upon.
Member of the Board, Infosys, CA.T.V.Mohandas Pai delivered a special address on Future of Accountancy Profession in India which was followed by panel discussion on Revised Discussion Paper on Direct Taxes Code.