|The Council has considered the issue regarding the working hours of the articled assistants. The Council is of the view that the article training is an important part of the CA curriculum and the same needs to be carried out in accordance with the scheme framed by the ICAI in this behalf. Accordingly, to clarify the doubts being raised by various quarters about the working hours of the articled assistants and for pursuing graduation/other course, the Council decided to issue the following directions:-
||The articled assistants should undergo practical training in accordance with the Chartered Accountants Regulations, 1988 as explained hereinafter.
- The working hours for the articled assistants shall be 35 hours in a week excluding the lunch break.
- The office hours of the Principal for providing article training to the articled assistants shall not be generally before 9.00 A.M. or after 7.00 P.M.
- The normal working hours for the articled assistants shall not start after 11.00 A.M. or end before 5.00 P.M.
- The working hours for the articled assistants should not exceed 35 hours in a week excluding the lunch break and normally an articled assistant be required to work during the normal working hours fixed for articled assistants.
- In case of the exigencies of work with the Principal, an articled assistant may be required to work beyond his/her normal working hours. However, under such circumstances, the aggregate number of working hours shall not exceed 45 hours per week. The requirement to work beyond 35 hours in a week should not be a practice but only in exceptional circumstances. Further, where the articled assistant is required to work beyond normal working hours, and aggregate of such hours exceed 35 hours per week, he/she shall be entitled to compensatory leave calculated with reference to number of completed working hours, over and above, 35 hours per week.
- The facility of allowing flexible office hours stands withdrawn.
||During the working hours, the articled assistant is not permitted to attend college/other institutions for pursuing any course including graduation. Accordingly, college timings of such course should not be such (after taking into account the time required to commute) which clashes with the normal working hours of the article training.
||To ensure that the working hours do not clash with the graduation or any other course, if any pursued by the article assistant, each articled assistant registered on or after 1st April, 2008 shall now be required to obtain specific permission from the ICAI for pursuing graduation or other course as permitted under the Chartered Accountants Regulation by submitting Form No.112, within one month from the date of joining the college or course to the ICAI.
||The articled assistant presently registered and undergoing graduation or any other course and who have not obtained specific permission shall be required to obtain the specific permission from the ICAI by submitting Form No.112 within six months of issue of these guidelines i.e. by 30th September, 2008. However those students who have already obtained the specific permission by submitting Form No. 112, need not obtain it again and the permission so granted shall continue to be valid.
||The Certificate in Form No. 112 indicating college timings etc. shall be counter-signed by the concerned Principal of the college with the seal and stamp of the College and also indicating the telephone number/s and full address of the College.
||In case a student does not comply with the above requirements or violates any of the above guidelines, his/her articleship period shall not be recognised.
||In this connection, attention is invited to the Regulations 65 and 66 read with Regulation 60 of the Chartered Accountants Regulations, 1988 which provide as under:-
Regulation 60: Working hours of an Articled Clerk
“Subject to such directions as may be issued by the Council, the working hours of an articled clerk shall be 35 hours per week to be regulated by the Principal from time to time”.
Regulation 65: Articled clerk not to engage in any other occupation
“Without the previous permission of the Council, obtained on application made in the *approved form, no articled clerk shall, during the period of his service as an articled clerk, take any other course of study or training, whether academic or professional, or engage in any business or occupation.”
Regulation 66: Enquiries against articled clerk
“(1) Where a complaint or information of any misconduct or breach of Regulation 65 or breach of any of the covenants contained in the articles is received against an articled clerk from his principal or any other person, the President or the Vice-President as the Executive Committee may decide from time to time, may cause an investigation to be made.
(2) The Executive Committee may, on a consideration of the report of the investigation and after giving the articled clerk an opportunity of being heard, make any of the following orders, namely;-
(3) The articled clerk, the registration of whose articles has been cancelled under this regulation, shall not, except with the permission of the Executive Committee be retained or taken as an articled clerk or audit clerk by any member”.
- direct that the papers be filed and the complaint be dismissed, if the Executive Committee finds that the articled clerk is not guilty of any misconduct of breach of Regulation 65 or breach of any of the covenants contained in the articles; or
- if the articled clerk is found guilty, reprimand the articled clerk or cancel the registration of articles or direct that any period already served under such articles shall not be reckoned as service for the purpose of the period of practical training specified in Regulation 50.