Kolkata: The outrage and protest by Chartered Accountancy students have gained massive momentum over two days with social media flooded with hashtag #Dearicaiplschange. Political leaders such as Rahul Gandhi and Raghav Chadha extended their supports to the CA aspirants.
Congress MP Rahul on Wednesday took to Twitter to support protesting CA students who are demanding a re-evaluation of their examination papers by The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI).
He tweeted, “Across India 12 Lakh CA students are fighting for their right to have their exam papers re-evaluated by ICAI. Given the widespread reports of errors in the evaluation of answer sheets, this demand is justified & should be supported by all political parties. #dearicaiplschange (sic).”
Across India 12 Lakh CA students are fighting for their right to have their exam papers re-evaluated by ICAI.
Given the widespread reports of errors in the evaluation of answer sheets, this demand is justified & should be supported by all political parties.
— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) September 25, 2019
Meanwhile, Aam Aadmi Party leader Raghav Chadha, who is also a CA, joined the protesting students at ICAI, Delhi, on Wednesday, to express solidarity.
WHAT IS THE PROTEST ALL ABOUT?
The primary demand of the students is to bring ‘reforms’ in the way the institute checks the paper. Even top certified teachers and CA members have joined this protest in support of the students.
The demand gained fresh momentum after the ICAI dished out “suggested answers” for the May 2019 exams. After the students tallied their answer sheets with the suggested answers, they found discrepancies — incorrect marking or lesser marks awarded in the sheet for the correct answers.
Protesting students are seeking an amendment to Regulation 39(4) of the Chartered Accountants Act, 1949. The existing regulation states that students cannot use his or her copy of the answer paper to demand revaluation of the answers by ICAI. While the student can demand a re-totalling of marks, he or she cannot expect the ICAI to examine the merit of not awarding marks for any answer.
Meanwhile, Neeraj Arora, who is a CA educator, recently posted a video on his YouTube channel, prompting the ICAI to undertake reforms in their evaluation system.
Anubhav Goyal, a CA aspirant who is also protesting on the current procedure, said, “It is high time the ICAI realised their mistakes and flaws in its evaluation system and provided the due rights to the students.”
“The current process is that ICAI only checks whether there has been a totalling error, all answers have been checked, and step markings have been provided. However, what if an answer is checked incorrectly? There is no provision for that. We are protesting that a right should be provided to students allowing them to get their copies re-evaluated,” Anubhav added.
Harsha Jindal, a Chartered Accountant in Bengaluru, expressed her solidarity with the protesting students. Harsha said, “A lot of students are suffering because of inappropriate evaluation of papers. Appropriate action should be taken by ICAI soon in this regard.”
Meanwhile, many top CA faculties across the country including the likes of Parveen Sharma, Vikram Biyani and Mohit Agarwal have come out in support of the students.
Speaking exclusively to NewsMeter, Vikram Biyani, a renowned Taxation teacher and Tax faculty, said, “I stand with the students as their demands are completely justified, while the ICAI has sought time. If students are not awarded marks as per merit, their hard work goes in vain. The entire movement is very crucial if you look from the students’ perspective. A large number of them take up this profession, working day and night.”
Meanwhile, Parveen Sharma, a renowned accounting faculty in the country, has also been all out in support of the students. On Wednesday, he tweeted, “We are fully charged for 3rd Day of Protest. Students is our strength. United we stand. #dearicaiamend39_4. https://youtu.be/x2Z_pIRp1tE. Chate Jao...Chalte Jao...Rukna Humara Kaam Nahi. Do join us at your respective cities (sic).”
We are fully charged for 3rd Day of Protest
Students is our strength
Chate Jao...Chalte Jao...Rukna Humara Kaam Nahi
Do join us at your respective cities
— Parveen Sharma (@caparveensharma) September 25, 2019
Amid the controversy, ICAI released the following statement on September 21 on their website:
“It has been brought to our notice that certain adverse reports relating to the system of evaluation of answer books of CA exams are doing the rounds on social media. In this connection, the following reforms which have been put in place recently are brought to the attention of the stakeholders in respect of the ICAI examination system:
Digital evaluation, Central evaluation, Machine based evaluation, Stepwise marking and Mandatory on-line test for empanelment of examiners.”
PROTEST STORMS INTO SOCIAL MEDIA
Many people took to twitter to highlight and extend solidarity with the students.
Some of the tweets are-
— Adv Paras (@parasv88) September 25, 2019
I cleared 7 subjects with good marks. I failed in international taxation due to wrong evaluation of MCQs worth 12 marks which are correct based on suggested answers. Had it evaluated right, i would be A CA today.#dearICAI_amend39_4@nsitharaman @PrafullaCa @ABPNews @FinMinIndia pic.twitter.com/doL3RFXxjn
— Mridul Arora (@MridulA41434164) September 25, 2019
— Chetan Garodia (@Chetan_honey98) September 25, 2019