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The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India provides access to certified copies of answer sheets under the RTI Act,2005 at Free of cost and ICMAI, ICSI at Rs. 2 per page. 

After CBSE, ICSI, University of Delhi, ICMAI, The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India has now implemented the Supreme Court's landmark judgment in the case of ICSI Vs. Paras Jain, Civil Appeal No. 5665/2014, relating to providing copies of Answer-Scripts under RTI. 

How to apply for certified copies through the RTI Portal?

A candidate can make an online application at his doorsteps without visiting any office, though user registration is not mandatory to file RTI application, I suggest you create an account at RTI online site, so that you can have a list of applications in user account and details like name, email, the address will be auto-filled while filing RTI application.

1. Create account and login to RTI portal by entering Username and Password at below link

2. Now, click on submit request option, scroll down and click on the checkbox “I have read and understood the above guidelines.” and then click on the submit button.
Then Online RTI Request Form will be displayed. This form can be used to file an online RTI application.

3. In search Public Authority field enter keyword as

– Chartered and select Institute of Chartered Accountant of India for CA Course

– Cost accountant and select The Institute of Cost Accountants of India CMA Course

– Companies secretaries and select Institute of Companies Secretaries of India for CS Course students, from the drop-down list and click on Ok.

Name, address, educational qualifications, communication details will be auto filled, if you have created account at RTI portal and you can change the same, if required.

4. In the field “Is the Applicant Below Poverty Line?”
Select the option as Yes, if you belongs to BPL – Below Poverty Line category and holds valid proof for the same like Food security Card, ration card etc.,

No application fee is required to be paid by such citizens as per RTI Rules, 2012

Enter BPL card number, year of issue, issuing authority in the next field.
Select the option as No, if you do not fall under the BPL category or does not hold valid proof for the same. Such candidates are required to be paid application fee of Rs. 10/- online.

5. Now in the filed “Text for RTI Request application”, provide details and request for certified copies.

There is no prescribed form of the application under the Act, 2005 but, I have referred to application formats of various institutes and have prepared a draft for your reference.

Download the draft application from the below link, in the word document format, enter your details and copy-paste the contents in the prescribed field.

Please note, handwritten application form is not required, Institute process and RTI process both are different platforms.

6. Now, upload merged pdf copy of BPL Card (if applicable) and Hall Ticket/ Admit Card/ any other supporting document like student I’d card, to prove your identity by clicking the supporting document.

7. click on submit button (if BPL category) or Make payment button (Others) to make the payment of Rs. 10/- towards application fee by using Internet banking, credit or debit card and click on the submit button, after making the payment.

8. On submission of the application, a unique registration number would be issued, which may be referred by the applicant for any references in future. The applicant will get an email and SMS alert on submission of the application.

Frequently Asked Questions with respect to certified copies under RTI. 

1. Whether ICAI will provide certified copies under RTI? 

To establish and follow the law laid down by Supreme Court in the judgement ICSI Vs. Paras Jain, ICAI appointed CPIOs exclusively for providing certified copies under RTI dated 29th Aug 2019. 

2. How many days it will take to get certified copies under RTI? 

As per RTI act, information to an applicant shall be supplied within 30 days from the receipt of application by the public authority. 

3. Can we seek certified copies of another student under RTI? 

No, we cannot make an application for answer sheets of other student, as Sec 8(1)(j) of RTI Act exempts the disclosure of personal information of an individual which has no relationship to any public interest or activity. 

4. Whether we are required to upload handwritten application like in case of ICAI process? 

Application need not be in handwritten. ICAI process and RTI process both are different platforms. 

5. What documents are to be uploaded under supporting document? 

To prove the identity, I suggest you upload Admit card/ hall ticket/ any other supporting document like student card, exam form etc., 
And upload your Food security card or Ration card, if you are falling under Below Poverty Line Category, to claim exemption from application fee of Rs. 10. 

6. Whether we should send print-out of the RTI application physically to the institute? 

No, there is no such requirement to send the application form physically. Once you have filed application at RTI portal, the same will reflect under CPIO's dashboard and he will take further action to provide certified copies. 

7. Can we get certified copies of previous attempt? 

As per the RTI act, 2005 information can be sought as far as it is available with the public authority. As per ICAI regulations 39(4) answer books are retained for a period of four months (120) days from the date of declaration of result. 

8. Whether Institute will do suo-moto verification of marks for certified copies sought under RTI and student can report discrepancies, if any? 

As per RTI Act, there's no such provision which mandates suo-moto verification. But, as per the sources it was informed that Institute is carrying out suo-moto verification of marks like retotaling errors for applications under RTI Act and if there are any discrepancies, student can bring it to the notice of the Institute. 

9. Whether we can choose any option like softcopy/hardcopy format of certified copy? 

No, we don't have any such option. It solely depends upon the institute in which format they want to provide. ICMAI and ICSI- Decided to provide in Hard copy format by charging Rs. 2 per page and ICAI - Decided to provide in soft copy format at free of cost. 

10. Whether we can seek MCQ paper and answers under RTI? 

ICAI mentioned that “only copies of OMR answer sheet will be provided upon receipt of an application in this regard, under this scheme. Neither MCQ paper booklet nor the answer keys thereon will be provided, and the certified copy of OMR answer sheets will not bear the Mark's awarded since the same are awarded in the System." But, the RTI Act has over-riding effect vis-à-vis other laws and ICAI must disclose the same under RTI Act, 2005. 

11. Where we can check the status of our application? 

Whether we will receive certified copies on mail or post? 
You can check the status of your application on RTI portal through below link: 

12. On ICAI portal it is showing still Rs. 500 per paper and you are saying free of cost? 

ICAI procedure and RTI process both are different platforms. The existence of these two avenues is not mutually exclusive and it is up to the candidate to choose either of the routes. ICAI can still charge Rs.500 as per ICAI guidelines for the application made at ICAI portal and Institute will provide certified copies at free of cost (ICAI) or at nominal cost of Rs. 2 per page (ICMAI) for an application under RTI Act, 2005. 

13. Refund of fee paid through ICAI portal? And whether ICAI will take any action if we apply under RTI? 

As earlier said, ICAI procedure and RTI process both are different platforms. The existence of these two avenues is not mutually exclusive. You won't get any refund of the application made for certified copies at ICAI portal. ICAI can still charge Rs. 500 per subject for application for certified copies received through portal. Providing certified copies under RTI act, 2005 is as per law laid down by the supreme court, ICAI wont take any action. 

14. What is the exact process to get certified copies under RTI? Whether we have to make any payment through DD? Rs. 2/- page or free of cost? 

Please, refer to our article for complete information. I will summarize the entire process quickly for your reference. 
Firstly, file an application seeking certified copies at RTI portal. At the time of filing application, you are required to make payment of Rs. 10 towards application fee and if you fall below poverty line category the same is not required. Just relax and wait for 30days. You are not required to contact CPIO/ Send mail/ Physical copy of your application Within 30 days Institute will reply on RTI portal itself. In the case of ICAI, you will receive a link to download the PDF copy of your answer sheet and no fee is required to be paid. Whereas, in the case of ICSI and ICMAI, you will receive a notification by SMS and Email that institute has responded to your application. Login to RTI portal, make the payment and you will receive hardcopy of the answer sheet within 7-15 days by speed post. 

15. To whom we should contact if we haven't received certified copies within 30days? 

You can contact CPIO of the respective institute. There may be no timely response on e-mail, try to reach the CPIO over Telephone during the office hours. Body CPIO Name Mail Id Telephone ICAI For CA Final level Shri Alok Malhotra 0120 3894808 For CPT/ Foundation/ IPCC/ Intermediate Shri Chatar Singh 0120 3054840 ICMAI Shri Prajato Mukherjee 033 40364710 ICSI Shri Surya Narayan Mishra 011 45341015

Faqs prepared by:
B. Vinay Reddy


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