Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Amritsar based CA gets life time ban for being mastermind of accommodation entries

Chartered Accountant Act, 1949: Name of practicing Chartered Accountant shall be removed from register of members for life as he was master mind in scam of providing accommodation entries and was held guilty of professional misconduct. Facts:

a) The allegations against respondent, a practicing Chartered Accountant at Amritsar, were that he was master-mind in a scam of providing accommodation entries to various concerns after charging commission ranging from 1% to 3%.He was also operating all benami bank accounts.

b) After receipt of the complaint, proceedings were initiated against Chartered Accountant. Copy of the complaint was sent to him, however, the notice was received back undelivered with postal remarks “left country”. The matter was considered in the meeting of the Disciplinary Council in its meeting and Chartered Accountant was found guilty of professional and other misconduct.

c) After considering the submissions of the complainant, the Council accepted the report of the Disciplinary Committee. The Council, decided to recommend to this court for removal of the name of Chartered Accountant from the register of members for a period of 10 years.

d) The submission of learned counsel for the ICAI is that not only the recommendations made by the Council be accepted, but seeing the conduct of Chartered Accountant, he deserves to be penalised by removing his name from the register of members for life.

The High Court held as under:

1) The Chartered Accountant grossly violated the code of ethics for Chartered Accountants. He admitted his guilt before the Income-tax authorities, which resulted in defrauding the revenue. Thereafter, he left the country. He did not avail of the opportunity afforded to him at different stages to defend the case against him.

2) A professional, who behaves in this manner, deserves to be dealt with sternly. In our opinion, the conduct of respondent is wholly unworthy of a Chartered Accountant, who is expected to maintain high standard of professional conduct. The punishment proposed by the ICAI in these circumstances is quite lighter. Such a professional deserves to be debarred from practice for life time.

3) Hence, we deem it appropriate to direct that name of Chartered Accountant be removed from the register of members of the ICAI for life. - [2016] 70 taxmann.com 170 (Punjab & Haryana)

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