The Supreme Court on Wednesday ruled that no immunity from prosecution can be granted to the members or nonmembers of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India for their professional misconduct under the provisions of the Chartered Accountants Act, 1949.

Such provisions cannot override the penal laws, said apex court setting aside the order of the Madhya Pradesh HC.

“The object underlying the prohibition contained in section 28 (Chartered Accountants Act) is to protect the persons engaged in profession of chartered accountants against false and untenable complaints from dissatisfied litigants and others. However, there is nothing in the language of the provisions contained in chapter VII from which it can be inferred that Parliament wanted to confer immunity upon the members and nonmembers from prosecution and punishment if the action of such member or nonmember amounts to an offence under the IPC or any other law” , said a bench comprising Justice GS Singhvi and Justice AK Ganguly.

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