Union Finance Nirmala Sitharaman said there is a need for Chartered Accountants (CAs) to upgrade their skills. Technology-driven changes are dominating even the CAs, and professionals need to have greater knowledge in using deep tech and data mining as these will help in understanding the health of a company, Sitharaman said in her address at the 90th Year Valedictory Celebrations of The Society of Auditors in Chennai on Saturday.

It is not just keeping the books but it is also looking at newer areas like cross-border dealing in money. There are exemplary cases in India. “I remember dealing with Jet Airways when cross-border investments and cross-border payments were coming our way and we were looking at resolving the problem of Jet Airways. This is just one example. We did not then have a law that treated it lawfully and had to bring in amendments,” she said.

Good suggestions

This country has the strength of good professionals, who give good suggestions. This government has been listening to such suggestions and acting up on it. Within just 10 years, the government has achieved what the previous governments could not achieve in the last 60 years when it comes to Digital Public Infrastructure. It’s the World Bank which has stated this, she said.

A well-matured organisation such as yours will have to look towards meeting the challenges of the century and help spread knowledge amongst the small and medium-level businesses. The government has also spent money on the same. Open Network for Digital Commerce is an example of it, the minister told the audience.

Serving the country and its goals will have to be a part of your identity and also part of your business model and professional model. In the next 25 years, it is a narrow window that the country has, Sitharaman said. “What we could not achieve in 1947, we need to achieve now. Many of us need to play a very important role in it,” she said.

While dealing with the accounts of the clients, it is also important that CAs advise them not to evade tax and divert the funds and ask them to do the business transparently. CAs have a big responsibility in the development of the country, she said. “If you find out there is an evasion, just alert the authorities. The system, using the power of Artificial Intelligence, will go to people behind the evaders,” she added.