Amid the unfolding Paytm Payments Bank Ltd crisis, Institute of Chartered Accountants of India President Ranjeet Kumar Agarwal on Sunday said its financial reporting review board (FRRB) may deliberate on issues of the fintech firm in the near future. The FRRB of the statutory body is currently conducting a review of the accounts of tech-based education unicorn Byju’s over alleged governance concerns, and the exercise is progressing well, the ICAI president said.

“So far, we have not considered it (Paytm issue), but the board meeting of the FRRB will take place in the near future and it will consider appropriate action if required. So far, we have not decided anything as far as this matter is concerned,” ICAI President Ranjeet Kumar Agarwal told PTI in an interview.

Newly elected committees, including FRRB, of the ICAI are expected to hold meetings from March onwards, he said.

Notably, the banking sector regulator Reserve Bank of India has already imposed restrictions on Paytm Payments Bank Ltd due to alleged regulatory concerns.

The FRRB may determine whether any scrutiny of the books is necessary over allegations of regulatory lapses and their impact on the payment bank’s accounting, he said.

“It is the discretion of the board whom to review and when to do so. It has a robust system,” the newly elected ICAI chief said.

Asked whether ICAI was waiting for a complaint regarding Paytm, Agarwal said, “The institute can take cognizance both suo motu and through complaints. In Byju’s case, it was suo motu.”

Speaking on Byju’s, he said that the progress on the board’s scrutiny is “going well and the report is expected by the end of this year”.

While explaining the FRRB structure, the ICAI chief said, “The board has a three-tier structure–technical, group, and then finally the board review.”

According to him, the FRRB is empowered to review the financial statements of listed companies.

“In cases of gross negligence, we proceed with further investigation. If there are minor issues, we provide advisory guidance,” Agarwal said.

Constituted in July 2002, it is an important wing of ICAI that works to bring improvements in financial reporting practices and thereby promote investors’ confidence in audited statements.

Meanwhile, investors and the founder of the troubled edu-tech firm Byju’s had locked horns over alleged mismanagement and governance issues.

The investors voted for a leadership change in an Extraordinary General Meeting on Friday and also moved NCLT.

The six investors, who moved the resolutions, hold more than 32 per cent stake in Think & Learn (T&L), the firm that operates the online tuition platform Byju’s.

  • Published On Feb 26, 2024 at 08:49 AM IST

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