CA Institute allows ‘opt out' option for students in July exams

KR Srivats New Delhi | Updated on June 23, 2021

Alternative attempt to be provided in November exam cycle for those who opt-out due to Covid-19

In what could sound music to the ears of thousands of CA students, the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) has finally relented and provided an “opt out option” for students registered to take the upcoming July examination cycle.

In the wake of Covid-19 restrictions across the country, several students were apprehensive about travelling to the examination centre to give their exams. The talk of possible third wave had only exacerbated their fears.

The CA Institute has now decided that in case the examinee himself/herself or his/her grandparents, parents, spouse, children and siblings (residing in the same premises) are infected with Covid-19, then such examinees will be provided “opt out option” (with carryover of fees paid and exemptions granted) to the November 2021 examination cycle.

However, examinees availing the “opt out” facility need to adhere to certain guidelines, the ICAI has stipulated.

‘Opt out scheme’

The provision of “opt out scheme” would be available only if the examinee were to furnish Covid positive RTPCR report along with the Aadhaar card of the infected person ( examinee or the relative as the case maybe).

Also, the last attempt for the old course of the final and intermediate examinations shall be extended to November 2021 examinations only for those students who have been allowed to opt out from May/July 2021 examinations, according to the CA Institute.

It maybe recalled that the facility of “opt out” scheme was provided last year also — for the November 2020 examination cycle, but only after the students went to the Courts.

Even this time round, several students have already knocked the doors of the Supreme Court to direct the ICAI to provide this facility of “opt out option” in the wake of the ongoing second wave of Covid19 induced pandemic. The apex court has been requested to quash or set aside the June 5 notification of ICAI announcing the exams date without any provision of “Opt out option”. Students have also sought apex court directions to ICAI to ensure that every district of the country has atleast one examination centre.

The CA Institute should have announced this “opt out option” at the time the schedule for July 2021 examination cycle were announced, said ICAI observers. They contend that CA Institute has now hurriedly gone in for opt out option as it fears that the Supreme Court may pass direction to this effect anytime soon. To save face, the ICAI has provided this opt out option now, when only little over 10 days are left for the Final and intermediate exams starting from July 5.

Already, the CA Institute had postponed the CA Foundation exams to July 24 from earlier fixed date of June 24, in the wake of several States continuing their Covid lockdowns.

Published on June 23, 2021

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