New Delhi: In view of the spike of COVID-19 cases across the country, the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) informed the Supreme Court on Thursday that it would assess the feasibility of conducting CA exams that are slated to be conducted between July 29 and August 16. The ICAI will also consult states and examination centres on the same. Also Read - Sushant Singh Rajput Death Case: Supreme Court Reserves Order, All Parties to Submit Written Note By Thursday

The bench, headed by Justice A M Khanwilkar, was told by the counsel that cases of coronavirus have increased and some of the states have extended the restrictions imposed amid the spike in the number of infection. Also Read - Sushant Singh Rajput's Family Lawyer Vikas Singh Fights For The Justice of The Late Actor

He sought time from the bench, also comprising Justices Dinesh Maheshwari and Sanjiv Khanna, for contacting examination centres to access the ground situation and explore the feasibility of conducting the exams. Also Read - SSR Death Case: Rhea Chakraborty Opposes CBI Probe, Says Mumbai Police Investigation is 'Free And Fair'

The top court was hearing through video conferencing a plea which has challenged the ‘opt out’ option provided by the ICAI to the candidates alleging that it “arbitrarily” discriminates between the aspirants in the May cycle of CA examination.

The apex court, after hearing the submissions, said it would hear the matter on July 10.

On June 29, the apex court had observed that ICAI should be flexible in conducting exams amid the COVID-19 pandemic and take care of candidates’ concerns.

It had suggested that option for change in examination centre should be made available to the candidates till the last week before the scheduled exams considering the fact that an area may become a containment zone due to the coronavirus situation.

The apex court had said that ICAI should be flexible on the issues of ‘opt out’ and change of examination centre as the situation prevailing due to the pandemic was not static and continuously changing.

Advocate Alakh Alok Srivastava, appearing for the petitioner, had earlier told the bench that number of examination centres should be increased and there should be one centre per district.

(With agency inputs)