The Supreme Court will hear a plea seeking postponement of the upcoming July-scheduled Chartered Accountancy (CA) examinations on Monday, June 28. The matter will come up before a three-judge bench of Justices AM Khanwilkar, Dinesh Maheshwari and Aniruddha Bose post noon.
Besides deferring the July exams, the plea seeks a direction to the ICAI to give an extra chance/extension, opt-out option to those students who are appearing for Intermediate and Final Course examinations under Old Syllabus in May 2021 cycle and willing to opt out before and during exam and/or to a further date but before next cycle of November exam and an alternate attempt but before November exam cycle and carry forward all the benefits.
The plea also prayed that the examination centres be increased so as to provide at least one exam centre in every district of India and conduct exam in a staggered manner. It also sought arrangement of free transportation and accomodation by ICAI for the students.
Besides, the plea requested the court to give directions to the institute to conduct mandatory free COVID-19 tests of all the students, teachers, invigilators and staff who will be deployed at exam centres. Further, it sought vaccination for all of them as well.
Advocate Shashibhushan P Adgaonkar said he is hopeful of securing certain reliefs for students.
"By this PIL, the petitioner is seeking relief for more than 3 lakh aspirants, who are slated to appear in examinations during July 5 to July 20 and July 24 onward amidst the exponential surge of the deadly coronavirus pandemic. The basic prayers sought before the Honorable Supreme Court are postponement of the scheduled exam from July 5 till all the candidates get vaccinated or till conducive atmosphere is available. Besides, grant of an "opt-out" option will be sought before and during the exam for all, an additional chance/extension to old course students, and granting of an extra attempt before November, just like last year, among many other reliefs," the advocate told India TV.
Petitioner Anubha Shrivastava Sahai, in her detailed plea, has requested for directions to the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) and the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) to formulate and lay down separate, exclusive guidelines for conducting CA exams.
"It is a big day for CA aspirants. I am expecting that students will definitely get some relief from Honorable Supreme Court and ICAI too will consider the same," Sahai told India TV.
As many as 6,000 CA students had on Saturday written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, elaborating their situation and the reliefs sought by them. Earlier, students had also reached out to Chief Justice of India N.V. Ramana.