Our accession to the designation ‘chartered accountant’ turned into reality after a prolonged struggle of our accountants, who were trained and educated in India, and were socially and professionally perceived different despite an equality in their abilities and rightfulness to audit accounts of companies in India, with their contemporary Chartered Accountants, who got their formal education from one of the British chartered societies. It started with an honest demand for a common status for all accountants of India. Veterans like Shri Govind Ballabh Pant, Shri Mohammad Ali Jinnah, Shri Krishna Kant Malaviya, etc., came out strongly in favour of the Indian accountants in the Legislative Assembly in 1936. Shri Jinnah argued: I stand for Indian talent, I want complete privileges and same rights as those given to anybody else in my country. In fact, this demand reminded us of a 1925 recommendation of the Indian External Capital Committee that included the educationist Shri Madan Mohan Malviya and the celebrated legislator Shri Vithalbhai Patel, to establish the order of chartered accountants in this country through the formation of an all-India Institute.

Unfortunately many felt in those days and some carry that misplaced notion even today that the designation ‘Chartered Accountant’ has a colonial baggage in it. Let us understand before we term and frame something colonial. All that is English or British is not colonial. With such wrongly-positioned understanding, we will have to change the names of many of the existing core courses in our Universities, as they were started following the British models. History and literature will also be withdrawn following this misplaced notion. In fact, I would like to quote here Shri Govind Ballabh Pant: …we have M.A.’s and LL.B.’s as in Cambridge…There are mechanical engineers again qualified in England as in India. Are not their titles common?…I do not mind suffering from an inferiority complex if it goads us on to a superior status, but I do not want superior arrogance if it tends to perpetuate an inferior status. It was the British who introduced modern education in our country from which we got acquainted with the existing contentions of world academia. Our own Ministry of Commerce had noted just before the enactment of the Chartered Accountants Act, 1949 that there was ‘no insuperable legal objection in using the designation ‘Chartered Accountants’. This designation was well-accepted those days in countries including Canada, Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, South Africa, Cape of Good Hope and South Rhodesia. It is still being used without any hint of ‘colonial’. Therefore, we will have to be quite sensitive in understanding what colonial is.

Our journey had begun with quite a clear conscience. Even today, a change just for the sake of change will not be acceptable to us. We would not allow anybody, for that matter, to doubt our sense of integrity and national pride, which has been the core and integral aspect of our professional constitution. We have been partnering in all possible ways with our Government since the profession’s inception in 1949. Our sense of responsibility and accountability is well-defined. We do not believe in futile exercises at the cost of our national resources, as this would be an absolute insult to the efforts of our intellectuals, who continue to command respect from all spheres of our society even today.

(Excerpt from the ICAI Presidents message for the Month of January 2012 to it’s members)

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0 responses to “The designation ‘Chartered Accountant’ do not have a colonial baggage in it ; All that is English or British is not colonial”

  1. Raj says:

    See the arrogance in his communique.This is the same tone used by Past Prez Amarjit Chopra once in ICAI journal.When Dy.Speaker of Rajya Sabha is a CA and chairing the proceeding of debate for CWA name change which ICAI is objecting and also the Standing Committee of Finance comprising some CAs or CA sympathizer who referred the name change bill,Its understood where does these arrogance comes from.Yest.day there was a report of an Auditor’s arrest by CBI for Disproportionate assets case of a political leader from AP.This Nexus is not good to the economy in the long run and more so concentrating country’s financial supervision task in one Institute will create a monster the Govt Risk one day threaten to gulp itself.

  2. CA MUTHUKORI says:

    THE MONOPOLY OF ICAI IS OVER.ACCEPT IT OR NOT IT IS ALREADY OVER.POST SATYAM, THE FIRST SLAP ON FACE OF ICAI FROM GOVT WAS FORMATION OF NACAS.ARGUE AS MUCH AS YOU WANT.THE REAL REASON IS TO SLOWLY AND SLOWLY SIDELINE ICAI AND TO GET MCA STRAIGHT INTO MAJOR CORPORATE GOVERNANCE MODELS.AGAIIN YOU MAY ARGUE THAT WHAT THE HELL BABUS KNOW ABOUT ACCOUNTING BUT THE REAL FACT IS THAT THE BABUS ARE CLOSELY WORKING WITH SOME BIG NAMES FROM ACCOUNTING FRATERNITY WHO ARFE HIGHLY KNOWLEDGEABLE,EXPERIENCED AND RESPECTED BY THE GOVERNMENT.THE SECOND SLAP WAS A REAL BAD ONE TO ICAI.MCA DECIDING ALL POLICY ISSUES.EARLIER THE GOVT USED TO BLINDLY ACCEPT WHAT ICAI USED TO PROPOSE AND IMPLEMENT.THE SCENARIO HAS CHANGED POST SATYAM AND ICAI’S DELAYED AND INABILITY TO TAKE ACTION ON THE REAL CULPRITS.THE GOVT CONSIDERS ICAI AS A CONSULTANT AND CONSULTS ICAI BUT AT THE SAME TIME HAS ALSO STARTED CONSULTING OTHERS FROM THE FRATERNITY.THE THIRD SLAP IS CURRENTLY UNDER PROCESS AND DISCUSSION AT HIGHER LEVELS AND THAT IS A INDEPENDENT REGULATOR TO REGULATE STATUTORY AUDITS OR BALANCE SHEET AUDITS AND FINANCIAL STATEMENTS.WHY WOULD THE GOVT TAKE THESE STEPS.IT IS NECESSARY WHEN ICAI IS THERE.ASK THESE QUESTIONS TO YOURSELF AND I AM SURE YOU WILL AGREE.IT IS OUR DUTY AS PROFESSIONAL BROTHERS TO SUPPORT ICAI AND ITS WELFARE IMPROVEMENT.CURRENT PRESIDENT IS SINCERELY DOING LOT TO DAMAGE CONTROL THE BAD REPUTATION OF ICAI IN INDUSTRY AND GOVERNMENT AND ALSO INTERNATIONAL ACCOUNTING FRATERNITY.THE REPUTATION OF INDIA AND SCAMS AND ICAI’s INABILITY TO TAKE STRICT TIMELY ACTION ON THE CULPRITS HAS TARNISHED THE GOOD SINCERE AND HONEST PRACTISING CHARTERED ACCOUNTANTS WHO ARE UNNNECESARILY NOW BEING PUNISHED BECAUSE OF IMPRACTICAL GOVERNMENT RULES.IF IACI WOULD HAVE BEEN PROACTIVE IN CORPORATE GOVERNANCE THEN THINGS WOULD HAVE BEEN BETTER.WHO IS RESPONSIBLE.ASK THESE QUESTIONS YOURSELF.

  3. Devendra Deore says:

    The ICAI is required to deleve work “Chartered” from it’s name, in a globalised economy, this word is missleading and shows that India gives royal chartered to a particular institute, where there is no royal in India as such. Further govt and a any common man can list down the financial scams such as satyam, dhabol etc have happened due to unefficient financial auditors (we call as CA). Govt is requird to give equal rightes to both the institiutes CAs and ICWAs, due to this there will be a good competion in professional area and business will have choice to get service from either member.

  4. ANAND SHEMBEKAR says:

    THE MAIN ISSUE IS THAT GOVERNMENT OF INDIA HAVE NOT GIVEN CHARTER OR ROYAL CHARTER TO ANY BODY OR ANY INSTITUTE , ICAI DOES NOT HAVE ANY RIGHT TO USE THE WORD CHARTERED .

  5. CMA Arif Farooqui says:

    Not agree with argur that Chartered is not conial. ICAI Presedent is using name of Mr. Zinna to defend his institute,

  6. Debashis says:

    Globally cost accountant also known as Cost and Management accountant not cost accountant. For this example not accepted for ICWAI name change based on bogus explanation that in section 2(1) cost accountancy act not mentioned Management word. Similar chartered word not mentioned in Chartered accountancy act 1949 . If giving bogus point taking same example which one nullified by the cost accountant name change same bogus point should accepted for Chartered accountants also. In case of name change they are not allow to anybody to interfere their name change but they are going to interfere other institute name change. They are interfering last 37 years in ICWAI name change and now they are saying we will not allow to anybody to interfere it. Government allow other institute in ICWAI name change that means interference to other institute is acceptable for Government. If British Model accepted for them for Chartered words then why chartered Management accountants name not accepted for Cost accountants or in Canada Cost accountant known Certified Management accountant. Here given example of Canada saying colonial example but they are forgetting in standing committee of parliament they have oppose this Global example, British example and Canada example. Also in Canada certified Public accountants are doing practice. In uk six Chartered accountants body their but not opposing anything against each other. This example is called inferior complex or superior complex. Those who opposing last 37 years Global example they cannot say I do not have any inferior or superior complex. They knows goodwill of Chartered word this reason they have change the name from Institute of Registered accountants of India to chartered accountants in 1949.

  7. Venugopal Unni says:

    A name like ‘ Munshiyonka adda’ should perhaps be acceptable to all.

  8. vswami says:

    ON THE FIRST BLUSH, ONE’S IRRESISTIBLY VIOLENT  REACTION IS THIS> THE SUBJECT CONTROVERSY LATELY AROUSED, REGARDLESS OF ITS ORIGIN, ALSO THE ONGOING BATTLE OF WITS (OR NO WITS !), OR ITS PERPETUATION IN ANY MANNER, IS, TO SAY THE LEAST,  A MINDLESS /MEANINGLESS ONE, AND BASICALLY UNWARRANTED. ONE THUS FAR BELIEVED THAT WAS TO BE THE SOLE PREROGATIVE OR PASTIME OF THE NOTORIOUS / UBIQUITOUS ‘PROFESSIONAL POLITICIANS’ ; CERTAINLY NOT OF ANY WELL MEANING AUGUST PROFESSION. IT IS A PARADOX THAT, IN TODAY’S SCENARIO IN WHICH THE WORLD IS TOTALLY MUDDLED UP, THE HARD FACT UNDERLYING THE BELIEF – ‘WHAT IS IN A NAME’  HAD REMAINED TO BE REALIZED TO THE CORE. 

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