The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) is conducting CA examinations for the November 2020 attempt. The institute has also given the students an option to opt-out (i.e. not to appear) in Nov. 2020 CA Exams. Such opted-out students can either choose to appear in Jan 2021 exam OR May 2021 exams as per their choice.
As per the ICAI Guidelines, the opt-out option is available to students who are satisfying any of the following conditions:
- (a) The students who are currently COVID-19 positive or having symptoms of COVID-19 at any time up to the conclusion of exams;
- (b) Whose Family members with whom the students are staying are COVID-19 positive or become COVID-19 Positive at any time up to the conclusion of exams;
- (c) If the area in which the student’s residence is located is declared as Containment Zone at any time up to the conclusion of exams
This opt-out option is available throughout the examination and CA Students can choose to opt-out at any time even during the exams.
Now, the students need not submit any kind of proof and they can opt-out on the basis of self-declaration only. Many students who were fearing COVID-19 also opt-out before or even during the examinations.
On 27th Nov. 2020, the ICAI issued a notification which was asking for the “Medical Report” from certain CA students who opted out. Now, immediately after the notification, CA students were in a massive panic. As many students don’t have the medical report and they opted out, they were in the confusion about what to do now (I was also flooded with messages!).
But here is the good news! The submission of the medical report is NOT REQUIRED FOR EVERY STUDENT. It means if you have opted-out does not necessarily mean that you have to submit a medical certificate now.
It required only CERTAIN STUDENTS to submit the medical report. But before heading toward the details to which students are required to submit the medical report, let’s have a look at the official notification which reads as follows:
“In continuation to the Announcement dated 7th November 2020 made regarding Opt Out Scheme wherein the students were allowed to opt-out for the various reasons due to COVID 19 and such opt-out was permitted without production of any supporting documents.
In view of the interest of fellow students and to sensitize the centers for further strengthening the precautionary measures, it is hereby ADVISED that candidates who have APPEARED in the ongoing examination and have now opted out for being personally turned COVID 19 positive during examinations days should immediately submit his/her report along with admit card (both sides) on firstname.lastname@example.org.”
Now, as you can see in the official notification, only those students who have APPEARED in the Nov. 2020 CA Exams AND such student has become COVID-19 Positive during the exam days.
It means the following students need not required to submit any medical report even if they have opted out:
1. Students who opted-out even before the start of CA examinations i.e. even before 21st Nov. 2020.
2. Students who did not appear in any exams and opted-out i.e. opted out even after 21st Nov. 2020 but without appearing in any of the exams.
3. Students who opted-out due to the COVID-19 symptoms but later on they did not turn COVID-19 Positive or recover from COVID-19 symptoms.
4. Students who opted out due to the reason that any of their family members were COVID Positive.
5. Students who opted-out due to the reason that their area falls in the Containment zones during the exam days.
So, if you have opted-out earlier, or wish to opt-out and falls in any of the above 5 reasons, then YOU NEED NOT SUBMIT ANY KIND OF MEDICAL REPORT.
Why ICAI wants Medical Report at all?
Now, some students are going to the extent of saying that ICAI has cheated on them as earlier they allowed opt-out on the basis of Self-Declaration and now they are asking for the medical reports. It’s Sheer Cheat!
No, it’s not! Just think once from the ICAI perspective. They have a lot of things to manage. Suppose one CA Student is COVID positive and is unaware of this fact. S/he appeared in the examination normally. But later on, s/he turned COVID-19 Positive.
During his/her appearance of the exam and turning COVID-19 Positive s/he again visited the center and appeared in 2-3 more exams. Now, what will happen to the safety of the other students and the center’s staff is unimaginable!
S/he might unknowingly turn into a super spreader and infect many others. That’s why ICAI is ADVISING such students that if s/he is now aware of the fact about being COVID-19 Positive then s/he must notify the ICAI also so that the ICAI could take appropriate actions to check the havoc to happen.
ICAI is trying its level best to conduct these exams and if unfortunately, any such case happens then ICAI will be held responsible for that. ICAI is very well aware of this fact and that’s why they are taking every measure and which is really commendable!
As of now, it must have been very clear to you that the medical report submission is not for every student who opted-out and also the reasoning. Students who have turned COVID Positive after appearing in the CA exams are the only one who is required to submit a medical report. Also, It is their moral responsibility too to submit such details so that the ICAI could take steps to save others from being infected.
But, if you have opted-out earlier due to the symptoms or any other reason (except being COVID Positive), in that case, you need not to submit anything. Instead, you should relax and simply prepare for the Jan 2021 OR May 2021 CA Exams. Good Luck with that!
I have tried to cover all your doubts in this article. But if I missed any, you are free to ask me by commenting in the comment section below. Alternatively, you could send me a direct message (DM) on Twitter or Instagram. You can find me by @niteshbind ID.
Article Written By: Nitesh Bind
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