External auditors seek protection from “harassment”


PTI, Jan 27, 2020, 5:40 PM IST

Kolkata: External auditors are seeking some sort of statutory protection from alleged “harassment” from agencies during the process of investigation of fraud cases, an official said.

Auditing and Assurance Standards Board chairman G Sekar alleged external auditors often face the brunt of fraud cases even though they have no role in it.

“Government officials get protection but external auditors do not have. We seek some sort of statutory protection so that we can perform our duties freely and fairly,” Auditing and Assurance Standards Board chairman G Sekar said.

Of late, there had been instances of arrests of chartered accounts for their alleged involvement in bogus GST returns.

“External auditors are targeted by investigating agencies without an opportunity to explain their role in the particular assignment, which causes panic among them,” he said.

CAG officials asked chartered accounts that they must be vigilant about triple bottomline – social, environmental and financial – of any company.

“Auditors should be more than a watchdog,” they said.

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