Dont be surprised if your organisation receives a directive from the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) asking you to verify the membership of your chartered accountant (CA). The ICAI, a statutory body established under the Chartered Accountants Act 1949, will soon ask companies to ensure that CAs employed by them are registered members of ICAI.
ICAI has already started shooting letters to major corporate houses to ensure that they verify the membership of their CAs. It is estimated that as many as 60,000 CAs are not registered with ICAI that is empowered to take disciplinary actions against its members in case of any accounting malpractice. ICAI believes that there are at least 15,000 to 20,000 CAs employed in India who are not the members of the institute. CAs now settled out of India are also not enthusiastic about retaining their membership with ICAI since they are practicing under the foreign authorities. Companies employing CAs must ensure that they are registered with ICAI so that the institute can take disciplinary action against him or her in case of any accounting fraud or violation of code of conduct, chairman, ICAIs Committee for Members in Industry, said Uttam Agarwal.
He added that ICAI will not be able to punish the culprit CA if he is not registered with institute in the scenario when accounting standards are becoming stringent day by day. According to Mr Agarwal, CAs avoid registration on account of carelessness since corporates ask only for their passing certificate at the time of recruitment and not the registration number with ICAI.
The registration and renewal fees are very much nominal for membership, he said. It may be mentioned here that CAs in the industry have now outnumbered the practicing CAs. Out of about 1.40 lakh CAs, about 75,000 are employed in the industry. With increasing rush of corporates to the ICAI centres for recruitment, the institute has made it mandatory for fresh pass outs to apply for membership before participating in the campus interviews