Company secretaries, students protest over new Companies Act

Express news service Posted online: Tuesday, Apr 08, 2014 at 0000 hrs
The Institute of Company Secretaries of India (ICSI) has urged the Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA) to immediately make changes to the rules related to their profession in the new Companies Act, 2013 as it has poses a threat to the future scope of the profession.

Upset over the new rules, which have been notified, thousands of ICSI members and students have been protesting since two days before the MCA office in the capital.

There is an unexplained deviation between the draft rules and notified rules. As per the notified rules, Public companies with paid up capital of up to Rs 10 crore as well as all private companies, have been exempted from having a company secretary. As a result, out of about 9,00,000 companies in India, only 7,500 companies will require company secretaries.

Keeping in mind that private companies constitute 93 per cent of total companies in India, the new Act has withdrawn most of the exemptions available to private companies under the old law to make the new law more stringent, but has exempted them from appointing a whole-time company secretary. These amendments are a big threat for Company Secretaries who are willing to go for employment.

The ICSI has written to the ministry urging it to immediately modify the rules. “Company secretaries are regulated professionals and they render services critical for companies. A company needs a company secretary as much as it needs an auditor,” protesters said.