The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) on Thursday told the Supreme Court that it will assess whether it was possible to hold the Chartered Accountancy exams as scheduled between July 29 and August 16 given that Covid-19 cases are on the rise across the country.
The Institute told a bench of Justices A M Khanwilkar, Dinesh Maheshwari and Sanjeev Khanna that it will consult states as well as examination centres and apprise the court.
The ICAI counsel told the court that some states have extended restrictions in view of a surge in Covid-19 cases. The bench allowed the request of the counsel for more time and fixed the matter for hearing next on July 10.
The top court was hearing through video conferencing a plea challenging the ‘opt out’ option provided by the ICAI to the candidates on the ground that it “arbitrarily”discriminates between the aspirants.
Hearing the plea on June 29, the court had asked ICAI to extend its ‘opt out’ facility for candidates who are unable to take the exams on account of the Covid situation to all candidates who cannot make it, irrespective of whether they opted to remain out or not.
The bench also advised the institute to keep open the option for change in examination centre till the last week and not to freeze it as the situation is evolving.
Advocate Alakh Alok Srivastava, appearing for the petitioner, had earlier told the bench that number of examination centres should be increased and there should be one centre per district.
The ICAI had expressed difficulty on this and told the court that over 500 examination centres have been identified and sanitized properly.