In a recent address at the inaugural session of the ‘Global Professional Accountants Convention’ in Gandhinagar, Gujarat, the Vice President of India, Shri Jagdeep Dhankhar, shed light on the indispensable role of Chartered Accountants (CAs) in the economic landscape. Describing them as the financial equivalent of MRI and CT scans, the Vice President emphasized the unique responsibilities of CAs and their far-reaching impact on the nation’s economy.

The Financial Guardians:

The Vice President underscored the vital role that CAs play as financial guardians. He highlighted that tax evasion and financial frauds pose serious threats to the financial stability and economic growth of the country, and CAs, as watchdogs, possess the capacity to contain these issues. This acknowledgment reflects the recognition of CAs as key players in maintaining the integrity of financial systems.

Navigating the Thin Line:

One of the key points of emphasis in Shri Dhankhar’s address was the thin line between tax planning and evasion. He urged Chartered Accountants to always lean in favor of tax planning and strongly condemn any practices that lead to tax dodging. This delicate balance reflects the ethical tightrope that CAs often walk, requiring them to navigate complex financial landscapes while upholding the principles of transparency and legality.

Custodians of Financial Integrity:

Referring to CAs as custodians of financial integrity, the Vice President highlighted the need for them to exemplify actions that secure transparent and accountable financial systems. This custodial role extends to preventing legal transgressions and window dressing practices. The exclusive domain of CAs in ensuring these standards was underscored, emphasizing their singular ability to enforce financial discipline.

Global Leaders in Best Practices:

Shri Dhankhar urged CAs to take a pledge to be global leaders in benchmarking best practices that enhance ease and transparency in financial systems. This call for global leadership reflects the acknowledgment of the increasingly interconnected nature of financial landscapes and the need for CAs to set high standards that transcend national boundaries.

Ethics as the Cornerstone:

The Vice President reiterated the non-negotiable nature of ethics in the realm of Chartered Accountancy. Ethics, he emphasized, is not an option but the only way out. Compromising ethics, in his view, is akin to causing an earthquake in the fiscal world. This strong stance on ethics underscores the foundational principles that should guide CAs in their professional conduct.

Role in GST Implementation:

Acknowledging the contribution of CAs, Shri Dhankhar praised the community for translating the Goods and Services Tax (GST) into a ‘Good and Simple Tax.’ This recognition highlights the active involvement of CAs in shaping and implementing significant policy changes, such as the GST, which stands as the largest tax reform since India’s independence.

Spirit of Economic Nationalism:

Economic nationalism emerged as a focal point in the Vice President’s address. CAs were urged to nurture the spirit of economic nationalism among businesses. The ‘Vocal for Local’ initiative was praised, emphasizing the importance of prioritizing economic nationalism over mere fiscal gains. This reflects a broader acknowledgment of the role of financial professionals in shaping economic policies that align with national interests.

India’s Economic Trajectory:

Shri Dhankhar provided insights into India’s remarkable economic trajectory, noting its transition from being one of the ‘Fragile-Five economies’ to proudly holding the position of the fifth-largest global economy. This trajectory, achieved within a decade, surpasses the economic prowess of nations like the UK and France. The Vice President projected India’s momentum toward becoming the world’s third-largest economy by 2030, underscoring the pivotal role of financial professionals in driving this growth.

Technological Breakthroughs and Digital Alignment:

The Vice President urged CAs to harness recent technological breakthroughs, including Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Quantum Computing, and Web 3.0. He emphasized the imperative for CAs to actively align with the digital ecosystem, positioning themselves at the forefront of technological advancements. The emergence of FinTech was cited as a case in point, emphasizing the need for CAs to adapt to the digital era.

India as a Global Hub:

In conclusion, Shri Dhankhar acknowledged India’s emergence as a global hub of financial and accounting processes. The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) was specifically recognized for playing a stellar role in building, standardizing, and sustaining the financial and accounting framework of the nation. The Vice President expressed confidence that ICAI would continue to contribute to the enrichment and enhancement of accounting and auditing standards and ethical integrity at both national and global levels.

Conclusion:

The Vice President’s address serves as a comprehensive overview of the multifaceted role of Chartered Accountants in shaping the economic landscape of the nation. From being financial guardians and custodians of integrity to driving global best practices and embracing technological advancements, the address underscores the evolving and dynamic nature of the CA profession. As India continues its economic ascent, the role of CAs as architects of financial frameworks and ethical stalwarts becomes increasingly pivotal, marking them as not just financial professionals but as key contributors to the nation’s progress and global standing.

*****

Vice President’s Secretariat

Vice-President describes Chartered Accountants as finance form of MRI and CT scan

Tax evasion and financial frauds endanger the financial stability and economic growth of the country – Vice President

There is thin line between tax planning and evasion; Chartered Accountants should always tilt in favour of tax planning and condemn tax evasion – VP

Chartered Accountants are the custodians of financial integrity – VP

VP asks Indian CAs to be global leader in benchmarking best practices that enhance ease and transparency

There can be no legal transgressions or window dressing if CA is so determined

Ethics is non-negotiable; ethics is not option; ethics is the only way out – VP

VP praises CA community for translating GST into ‘Good and Simple Tax’

VP urges CAs to nurture spirit of Economic Nationalism amongst the business industry

India is emerging as a global hub of financial and accounting processes – VP

VP inaugurates ‘Global Professional Accountants Convention ‘ in Gandhinagar today

Posted On: 24 NOV 2023 6:23PM by PIB Delhi

The Vice President of India, Shri Jagdeep Dhankhar today described Chartered Accountants as a finance form of MRI and CT scan and underlined that any dilution of their unique role would have cascading impact on the nation’s economy and financial health.

Addressing the inaugural session of ‘Global Professional Accountants Convention’ in Gandhinagar,  Gujarat today, the Vice President stressed that tax evasion and financial frauds endanger the financial stability and economic growth of the economy. “As watchdogs your capacity is potent enough to contain these,” he told the Chartered Accountants present there.

Observing that a tax system is only as good or as complicated as tax professionals make it, he wanted all CAs to take a pledge to be global leaders in benchmarking best practices that enhance ease and transparency.

“Advising on tax planning is your domain. But this domain has a thin line. This should not extend to tax dodging and tax evasion,” he said. Describing the Chartered Accountants as the custodians of this thin line between tax planning and evasion, he asked them to “always tilt in favour of tax planning and condemn tax evasion.”

In his address, VP said that Chartered Accountants as the custodians of financial integrity need to exemplify by action to secure transparent and accountable financial systems. Asserting that there can be no legal transgressions or window dressing if a Chartered Accountant is so determined, Shri Dhankhar said, “You alone can do this. No one else can do this. This is your exclusive domain. When a CA stands up, the resistance may be momentary, ultimately he has to prevail.”

The Vice-President emphasized Chartered Accountants’ crucial role in driving the nation’s economic growth as ‘Nerve center & Epicenter of big change’ that shape what Bharat will be in 2047. He highlighted their contribution in combating corruption, uncovering malfunctions, and detecting corporate fraud. He stated that their determination could eliminate legal transgressions and window dressing practices.

Cautioning that ‘Compromising of Ethics is no less than an Earthquake in the fiscal world’, the Vice-President underscored that ethics play a pivotal role in fostering trust and integrity across financial reporting, auditing, taxation, and consulting services. Emphasizing the significance of a fair taxation and financial reporting system extending beyond mere revenue generation for the government, Shri Dhankhar praised that “CAs in Bharat have the highest ‘Ethics Quotient’”, by making their clients adhere to Rule of Law. He also urged for a contemporaneous governance mechanism that can help Chartered Accountants unleash energy to attain public good and growth of the nation.

The Vice-President highlighted that the convention’s theme, “Connecting the Globe, Creating Value,” resonates with our economy’s current dynamics. He emphasized its alignment with the G20 motto, “वसुधैवकुटुंबकम – One Earth, One Family, One Future.

The Vice-President noted that in today’s ecosystem, transparency and accountability stand as new norms. The power corridors, once plagued by corrupt practices influencing commercial decisions, have undergone a cleansing process. He highlighted that with a zero-tolerance stance against corruption, the role of CAs flourishes. Noting that the adage, “Be you ever so high, the law is always above you,” is now a ground reality, the VP stated that “the people who think they are above law, they are special category, they have learnt lessons and hard way”.

Reflecting on Gandhi Ji’s words, “World has enough for everybody’s needs but not everybody’s greed,” the Vice-President highlighted how some are driven by greed, not truly asleep but ‘feign sleep.’ He pointed out the ICAI’s motto, “a person who is awake in those that sleep,” aptly encapsulating the role of CAs in present times.

Talking about the importance of economic nationalism in trade and industry, the Vice-President emphasized its priority over fiscal gains. He appreciated the ‘Vocal for Local’ initiative by the government and highlighted how importing non-essential goods impacts foreign exchange reserves, hampers job creation, and obstructs entrepreneurial growth. Additionally he stressed that export of raw materials without value addition, leads to its adverse impact on employment opportunities and underscores the nation’s inadequacy in engaging effectively in value addition processes. VP further urged CAs to nurture spirit of Economic Nationalism amongst the business industry.

The Vice President appreciated India’s remarkable economic trajectory, transitioning from the ‘Fragile-Five economies’ to now proudly holding the fifth-largest global economy position in a short span of a decade surpassing the economic prowess of the UK and France in 2022. Shri Dhankhar further emphasized India’s momentum toward surpassing Japan and Germany by 2030, leading the nation into the coveted position of the world’s third-largest economy.

Referring to the GST as the “Tryst with Modernity”, the Vice-President remarked that it stands as the largest tax reform since independence, completely transforming the country’s indirect taxation landscape. He also praised the Chartered Accountants fraternity for their role in shaping Goods and Services Tax into the user-friendly ‘Good and Simple Tax.’

Urging action towards harnessing recent technological breakthroughs like Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Quantum Computing and Web 3.0, VP emphasized the imperative to unleash their potential. He further informed that substantial budgetary allocation has been made to the National Quantum Mission and Green Hydrogen Mission. Stressing the importance in this digital era, he highlighted the need for Chartered Accountants to actively align with the digital ecosystem, positioning them at its forefront. ‘The emergence of FinTech can be a case in point’, he noted.

The Vice-President acknowledged India is emerging as a global hub of financial and accounting processes in which Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) has been playing a stellar role in building, standardising and sustaining the financial and accounting framework of the nation. In conclusion, the Vice-President expressed confidence ICAI will continue to make its mark on the global canvas for further enrichment and enhancement of the accounting and auditing standards and ethical integrity at national and global levels.

Shri Piyush Goyal, Hon’ble Union Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution and Textiles, Govt. of India, Shri Praful Pansheriya, Hon’ble Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs, Primary, Secondary and Adult Education, Higher Education, Govt. of Gujarat, Ms. Asmaa Resmouki, President, International Federation of Accountants (IFAC),CA. Aniket S. Talati, President, ICAI and other dignitaries attended the event.

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