We all are aware that the pass percentage of the CA-Final, November 2013 attempt was the least(3.11% for both groups) of all the previous attempts so far and the same is the grief of lakhs of students who appeared for the aforementioned exam but failed to pass it. All of us are also aware that the actual reason behind this sudden downfall in the pass percentage was deliberate manipulation of the result by the ICAI so as to reduce the supply of Chartered Accountants in the market as most of us know that our marks do not reflect a true picture of what our answer scriptts contain despite the fact that the ICAI council members will never accept the allegation. It is high time time now that the ICAI realises that we are not its slaves and injustice will not be tolerated anymore. The letter posted below talks about this issue and other related aspects to it and has already been sent to most of the Council members belonging to the different regional centers of the ICAI by various aggrieved students throughout the country. A demand has been put forth before the ICAI to conduct a reevaluation of the answer scriptts of all the aggrieved candidates in an unbiased, unjust and transparent manner so as not to manipulate the result deliberately and re-release the result of the students with the marks so ascertained. It is a request to all the aggrieved students to go through the letter, join the remonstration, and spread the word such that the same message reaches the ICAI repeatedly so that this gross injustice comes to an end.
We, the aggrieved students of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India who appeared for the CA-Final Examination held in November 2013 would like to convey to you with utmost respect that our result of the aforesaid examination is not a true reflection of what our answer scriptts contain and does not show the true picture of our performance. It is known that the pass percentage of the aforementioned examination is the least in the past decade the figures with respect to which can be noted in Table (A) in the Annexure attached to this letter. It seems as if a special message was given to the examiners and moderators so as to direct them towards not awarding fair marks to the candidates as against what has been done in the previous attempts of the examination.
It is to be noted that there is a huge flaw in the subjective or narrative pattern of examination which is that the examiners as guided by their higher authorities have full discretion as regards the manner in which they wish to correct the answer scriptts of the candidates. For example, if highest marks that a question contains is say, 10 then it is the discretion of the examining authorities if they wish to award 3/10 or 7/10 or any other number as per their discretion. It hasn’t been proven legally but it is visible that this time the answer scriptts have been marked very strictly so as to restrict the pass percentage of the aforementioned examination and thus, instead of giving 7/10 a 3/10 has been awarded deliberately to curtail the result percentage. Not even closely do our marks in any subject correspond to what has been written by us in the answer scriptts of the aforementioned examinations. A conspiracy is visible that to reduce the supply of Chartered Accountants in the market actual marks that the candidates deserve have not been awarded in the examinations and the results have been deliberately compromised.
We have absolutely no way out at this point as the facility of reevaluation of answer scriptts is not available to the candidates. The facility of only verification of marks is available in which recalculation or rechecking of total of marks awarded is done which is not the apt remedy in this case. It is disappointing to know that there is absolutely no system devised by the ICAI, which has a team of best intellectuals throughout the world to provide the students enough transparency to challenge the result that wrongly represents their performance in the examinations. At present, reevaluation of the answer scriptts can only be sought if one goes to a Court of law which is not advisable as we all know that the pursuit of justice in the Indian courts of law suffers from chronic delays and by that time next attempt of the CA-Final Examination will arrive.
Our parents have stopped us from disclosing our names or registration numbers or roll numbers or to join any protest against the actions of the ICAI. We all are aware that the ICAI has the absolute power to manipulate the result in the next attempt of the CA-Final Examination or impede the process of awarding Certificates of Practice to those aggrieved candidates who protest and even give a legally justified background to it. This is what scares us all and thus it seems as if we are the slaves and the ICAI our master.
The ICAI teaches us lessons of ethics and morality which is incorporated in the syllabi of our course but what can be comprehended now is that the same ethics are being compromised here by the ICAI itself by manipulating the result pattern just like one regulates the regulator of a kitchen stove to control the production of Chartered Accountants in the market in whichever way the Institute wishes to.
We would like to bring to your notice that we all are doing our active articleship in different cities of India. We are not enrolled as dummies and we do not agree with the logic given by CA Subodh Kumar Agrawal, the President of the ICAI that there is ‘no extraneous reason for slippage in pass percentage’ and that the candidates who failed the examination lack a ‘practical knowledge’ of the subjects. We are aggrieved, innocent students who have become victims of a policy decision which was unfortunately taken in this attempt of the examination and not in the previous attempts which is evident from the percentage of result of this attempt as compared to the previous attempts. The result percentage this time, i.e., November 2013 in the case of both the groups of CA-Final Examination was 3.11%, as regards May 2013 was 10.03%, as regards Nov. 2012 was 21.85%, as regards May 2012 was 16.38%, as regards Nov. 2011 was 15.78 and with respect to May 2011 was 20.51%(Kindly refer Table (B) in the Annexure attached to this letter). A question arises as to what happened all of a sudden that the pass percentage went down to a shocking 3.11%? Similar questions have been put forth to various Council members of the Institute including CA Subodh Kumar Agrawal, the President of the ICAI by the media the answers to which have not been quite satisfactory.
We would also like to draw your attention to the way the ICAI contributes in spoiling the professional lives of the enthusiastic students. The candidates who wish to attain the professional degree of Chartered Accountancy appear for the CA-entrance test (Common Proficiency Test or CPT) and are easily able to pass it as the pass percentage in CPT is regulated by the Institute such that atleast 30% of the candidates pass the same as can be observed from the numbers stated in Table (C) of the Annexure attached to the letter. This is done by setting the paper easy and it can be easily gathered that the object sought to achieve by doing this is that more students should enroll for the course and the revenue should keep flowing into the Institute by means of registration and exam fee. But what is deplorable is that as the student passes CPT and further the Intermediate stage of the course, undergoes 3 years of articleship and finally qualifies to appear for the final stage of the Examinations- CA Final, the Institute restricts the pass percentage to a very low number by deliberately manipulating the result of the examination in comparison with that of CPT. It is like a booby trap atleast for mediocre students who are stuck in one stage of the course or the other and are not able to complete the course by failing in the final stage of the course. Consistency in the examination and marking pattern throughout the course, from CPT stage to CA-Final stage, is what is needed to expel irregularities from the system.
We, as students are taught the lessons of equity and justice in the syllabi of Chartered Accountancy but we do not understand as to why the same seem missing from the way the CA-Final candidates have been treated this time. It is not expected of a body like the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India to show such injustice to their students.
Therefore, we humbly request you to reevaluate the answer scriptts of all the candidates who appeared for the CA-Final Examinations held in November 2013 in an unbiased, unjust and transparent manner so as to not manipulate the result deliberately, and see the change. If all auditing tools are applied by the ICAI in reevaluation of the result of these exams, we guarantee that a changed picture will come out thus reflecting the true image of the performance of the candidates. It will thus enhance the credibility of the institute. It is also requested that a system of reevaluation of the answer scriptts be devised for bringing about transparency in the way the answer scriptts are marked by various examiners.
We further request you to apply the objective type pattern in CA examinations which is applied in the examinations conducted in the course of Chartered Financial Analyst (U.S.A.) or in the UGC-NET examination where there is no flaw of discretion of the examiner in awarding marks as noticed in the subjective type pattern of examinations.
We are more than one lakh students who are aggrieved but none of us has the courage to come forward in the picture because we have already completed the Intermediate stage of the course and at this point we can’t risk spoiling our career by confronting the Institute we study under. It is requested to kindly show mercy on us and accede to our request of reevaluation as mentioned above. There is another big question that emanates from the treatment given to CA-Final candidates in this attempt- What is the guarantee that such an act will not be repeated by the ICAI in May 2014 and further the attempts to come? It is this unanswered question that is haunting every CA-Final candidate at the moment who wishes to appear for the same exam in the next attempt despite being fully prepared for the examination which he was in the current attempt as well.
If the Institute assures us that our prayer as mentioned above will be acceded to and reevaluation of the answer scriptts will be done in the prescribed manner, we promise to disclose to you our CA registration numbers.
We are a part of the Institute and therefore it is our duty to exhaust all the measures internally available to us before seeking justice externally through the courts of law, hence we write this letter to you. It is very easy to learn that internally, within the ICAI there are agents at play that control the result of the candidates of examinations so as to regulate the supply of the Chartered Accountants in the market and the same can easily be elucidated to the general public if a Court order directs an internal scrutiny regarding the same. This would further deteriorate the credibility of the Institute internationally. Thereby, waiting for your reply we humbly request you to accede to our aforementioned request.
Aggrieved students of the ICAI.