Editorial board writes


Dear Esteemed Members and Seniors,
Greetings! Our alma mater has stepped into its 70th year of existence today.
On July 1st, 1949, an act of Parliament gave birth to the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI). Founded a year before the Constitution of the country was formalized, ICAI is among the oldest professional institutions in our country. As on date, It is the second largest professional accounting and finance body in the world in terms of members, with a current roster of about 3 lakhs members.
To be a part of the ICAI’s member list as a bona fide Chartered Accountant is a prestigious honor indeed – one that is celebrated every 1st of July, as the ICAI Foundation Day or, the Chartered Accountants’ Day.
The genesis of the CA profession can be traced back to the pre-independence days. Back in 1913, the British government in India passed the Companies Act, which had a prescribed list of books that every company registered under the Act had to maintain. The Act also provided for the appointment of an Auditor who had the power to audit these books. Five years later, the Government Diploma in Accountancy course was launched in Bombay (present-day Mumbai). This course had a pattern similar to today’s CA course, complete with a three-year training period. Those who completed the course could practice as an Auditor throughout India.
In 1930, the then Government of India decided to maintain a register of accountants and proffered the title of Registered Accountant to those accountants whose name was entered into this roster. However, even with all these practices, the accountancy profession remained unregulated until an expert committee created in 1948 suggested that an autonomous body should be formed, for enhanced regulation. By then though, many Indians had already become members of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) and were known by the term Chartered Accountants. Despite the controversy surrounding the term, it was retained as it was already widely used. Thus, when the Chartered Accounts Act of 1949 was passed and the ICAI came into being, the term Chartered Accountant became the preferred title instead of the previously used Registered Accountant. Since then, 1st July has been commemorated as the ICAI Foundation Day or CA Day in India.
Friends, the official motto of our beloved Institute is a quote from the Upanishad which reads “Ya esha supteshu jagriti”. It translates as “the one who is awake in those that sleep”. A CA is honour-bound to follow the ICAI’s regulations and to always be compliant and vigilant. Even when a client is lax about their taxes and compliances, it is the CA’s duty to help them become better tax-paying and law abiding citizens of the country. Businesses small and large need an expert’s help, and a CA is always willing to come to the rescue. It’s something that is ingrained in their DNA, and the CA Day is just a ruse to celebrate and acknowledge the profession’s importance to the country’s economy.
Nine Letters of Honour
Dear Members….the long history of Indian Independence Movement is fraught with a million stories, tales and episodes which outline the struggles and sacrifices of countless souls who transformed the much sought after dream of a free and independent India into a reality. Amidst these riveting and scintillating stories with which we have been regaled with over the years, there are many heroic tales which have been smothered by the sands of time and lost somewhere in between the pages of history. Tales that collect dust in shambling, forgotten archives of libraries and old bookstores which people no longer care to visit. Among them is one such story, which is essentially a tale of a monumental struggle of a few brave Indian men, who sought to liberate an institution and a profession from the shackles of British dominance and tyranny.
Unknown to many and inspired by the pre independence Constituent Assembly Debate of the year 1936, this tale is about our forefathers who fought a battle of words to establish the honour and dignity of the Indian Professionals and in particular the Accountants. The Nine Letters of Honour i.e. the letters forming the epithet “CHARTERED” were conferred on the Indian accountants after a long struggle. This struggle has been scripted into a play by CA Amar Agarwala and we intend to showcase it before you on Saturday, the 20th day of July, 2019 at Kolkata.   
Since the inception of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India on 1st day of July, 1949, Chartered Accountants have successfully proven themselves in playing different and diverse roles, throwing much needed light and weightage upon the fact – that it is indeed the mother of all degrees and qualifications. Every year we proudly and happily celebrate this day as ‘Chartered Accountants’ Day’;
Therefore, this year which is the 70th anniversary of the CA Day, we wish to pay our deepest regard to this esteemed institution which has endeavoured over the years to light the lamps of wisdom in countless young minds. We also wish to stand together and salute our forefathers and their sacrifices who has laid the foundation of this revered institution, which has partnered economic well-being of this great nation.
This play is only a miniscule tribute to not just this revered body but to all those who have made this profession worthy of respect and honour. It is a gesture of profound thankfulness and deep gratitude – which emanates not just from our heart but from an entire fraternity of the brightest minds, whose combined initiative has helped to unveil this piece of history which would have otherwise been cast away and later lost in oblivion.
I take this opportunity to invite you to join and be part of this play titled “Nine Letters of Honour” on the aforesaid scheduled date at Kolkata.
Be a part of this unwritten history.
Happy 70th Foundation Day to all the Members and Students

Team Eirc