Petition Filed : Valuation goof costs many CA qualification – Spot Revaluation Asked
“Spot Re-verification Is our Legitimate Right”
Errors in evaluation of exam papers may have cost many aspiring to become chartered accountants the coveted professional qualification. Several CA aspirants, who wrote the final examination in May this year but failed to make the grade, have alleged that the evaluators have goofed up, with many of their right answers getting zero marks. The students say they found this out when they downloaded the answer sheets and checked the answers.
Only 8% of those who appeared for the CA final examination passed out this year, a significant drop as usually about 15% of the candidates clear the exam every year. “In my costing paper, I answered a question for eight marks with a table and the final figure tallied with the suggested answer. But I was given no marks for the answer,” said Kishan (name changed), a CA aspirant. The costing paper alone brought down his overall marks and he lost the chance to become a chartered accountant.
Experts say this shows the poor quality of evaluators engaged by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India. The Southern India Regional Council of the institute has acknowledged the problem and issued a warning against appointing unqualified examiners. A petition filed by a student in this regard is pending in the Madras high court.
“The examiners mechanically go by the scheme of valuation. They don’t see the quality of the answers and some of them are not even CAs,” a member of the council said. “At present students can only ask for re-totalling but if re-evaluation is allowed many students will qualify. I have taken this up with the institute authorities several times but no action has been taken so far,” he said.
The institute officials have admitted to receiving complaints about errors evaluation after the results were announced in July. “Correction is being done by qualified people. Institute will look into the complaints at the earliest,” a senior official said.
Another problem that the experts point out is the lack of adequate number of examiners. “Nearly 60,000 students appear for final exams each year, but only a few hundred chief examiners are appointed. It is not possible for the chief examiners to check all papers. They randomly check papers for errors in totaling and to see whether the valuation scheme is being adhered to,” said chartered accountant and veteran costing teacher R Sivakumar.
He said the CA institute in Indian lacks transparency. “Institutes in the UK and other countries have maximum transparency and students are told about the method of valuation and if marks are not awarded, the reason is also given,” said Sivakumar.
A few years ago, the started allowing the students to download answer sheets after paying a fee of Rs 500. This opened a can of worms as many students found they had failed the exam though their answers tallied with the answers given by the institute.
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