CA/CS Ashish Kalra is a postgraduate in commerce (M. Com) and has also done MBA. Apart from this, he has also done various diplomas/ short courses related to leadership, business management, finance, and strategic cost management. CA/CS Ashish Kalra is known for his in-depth knowledge, extreme conceptual clarity & his innovative style of teaching using stories, animations, visualizations, and presentations which have made him a favourite among the students. Over more than past 2 decades, he has been teaching CMA, FM and EFF, SFM and SCMPE along with mentoring students to become successful professionals. In the last 21 years, more than a thousand aspirants have scored ranks in CA, CS, and CMA under his guidance and 10 of them have also scored AIR-1 too. Often people say that scoring good marks in CA course is difficult; however, under his guidance many students have scored 99/100 and even 100/100 in his subject.
Company Secretary (CS) is a prestigious title that is bestowed upon a professional by a statutory body, i.e., The Institute of Company Secretaries of India (ICSI), albeit only after successful completion of all the three levels, i.e., CSEET, CS Executive and CS Professional exams. The ICSI is the only professional body in India that has been formed for regulating the conduction of exams for this prestigious professional degree. The ICSI was fundamentally established as a statutory body via an act of the Parliament, i.e., the Company Secretaries Act, 1980. Ministry of Corporate Affairs is the parent body that governs the entire functioning of the ICSI and at present, there are more than around 62000 members registered with the ICSI, along with 3.5 Lakhs students that are enrolled with it. CS is a very reputable and senior position both in a private as well as in a public sector company.
A Company Secretary is considered as a Key Managerial Personnel (KMP) in a company wherein he regularly deals with the top level management. He primarily acts as a bridge between an organization and its innumerable shareholders, board of directors, government, and other regulatory authorities. A Company Secretary meticulously ensures that the rules of a company are being acquiesced with properly. He is also responsible for conducting Secretarial Audit as defined under Section 204 of The Companies Act, 2013 and for signing the Secretarial Audit Report.
Company Secretaries also render consultancy on good governance practices that is accompanied with thorough compliance of Corporate Governance norms, which are in regard to the widely accepted Securities and Business Laws. Also, with the dynamic transmogrification of the fast – changing business world, the role of a CS has expanded manifold.
The erstwhile role of a CS was just to assist the top management and the Board of Directors. However, in today’s business oriented world, a Company Secretary is considered as a “conscience seeker” for a company, as he performs several different roles that range from handling the enervating legal matters to ensuring diligent corporate governance practices. He is the one looking after various critical aspects such as Corporate Social Responsibility, fulfilment of several statutory regulations in consonance with their varied timelines so as to avoid penalties, ensuring that the laws related to corporate credibility and transparency of the organisation in connection with its stakeholders and general public is maintained at all times, etc.
A qualified Company Secretary can work in both the public and the private business entities such as Public Limited Companies (whether listed on a stock exchange or not), Private Limited Companies, Government Financial Institutions, Stock Exchanges, Bureau of Public Enterprise, Nationalised Banks, Department of Company Affairs, etc. Also, a Company Secretary can have his own firm (i.e., he can take a Certificate of Practice from ICSI), wherein he can render his consultancy to his clients relating to Companies Act, Competition Act, Intellectual Property Rights, Securities Contracts (Regulations) Act, SEBI guidelines, listing agreement of stock exchange, and various other Corporate and allied laws. The initial pay package of a CS ranges from around Rs. 3 Lakhs to Rs. 7.5 Lakhs, depending upon the skill-set, dedication, and knowledge of the professional. Hence, we can conclude that in today’s age, the job of a CS is a highly prestigious one.
However, it’s not easy to undertake such a strenuous professional course as it demands not only great dedication and consistent study, but also the right guidance of teachers and mentors who can help the students excel in their career as a CS by providing the knowledge of both the theoretical as well as the practical aspects.
There are three mandatory levels that a student must clear so as to become a Company Secretary and these three levels are –
- CS Executive Entrance Test (CSEET):
CSEET is the initial stage for becoming a qualified CS and a candidate must have a Secondary School Certificate, i.e., he must have passed Class 10th, as this is the minimum eligibility criteria that should be mandatorily fulfilled for provisional registration with the ICSI. However, such a candidate can only appear for the CSEET exam after clearing Class 12th exams.
- CS Executive:
CS Executive is the second level of the CS Course that a student must clear before entering the CS Professional level. As per ICSI Notification No. 01 of 2018, the CS Executive and CS Professional Exams would be in accordance with the New Syllabus wherein there would be a total of Eight Papers at CS Executive level.
- CS Professional:
CS Professional is the last level of the CS Course after clearing which, a CS aspirant will transform into a qualified Company Secretary.
The CS course offers various avenues and opportunities in the professional sector. Those having interest in legal matters, and understanding of the Securities, Corporate and other Business Laws can definitely enter into this respectable profession to pursue their interest. They will also be able to generate huge returns on the investment which they made during the journey of the CS course.