India expecting boom for forensic accounting

Ramalinga Raju

The Satyam scandal means India will need up to 6,000 new forensic
accountants, one of the country’s leading experts has forecast.

Mayur Joshi, founder and CEO of Indiaforensic Consultancy Services, claims
that the trade body of India’s IT industry Nasscom is planning to beef up due
diligence accounting guidelines so that they would effectively “entrust the task
of detecting and preventing the fraud to the forensic accountants”.

Reeling under revelations of the billion dollar Satyam affair, Joshi told
Accountancy Age that India is going to require 6,000 of these specialist
accountants in the near future. However there are far too few trained
professionals available.

The Satyam scandal broke last month when former chairman
Raju admitted in a letter
that an accounting fraud thought to be worth up to
$1bn(£700m) had taken place at the IT giant.

Major demand for forensic accountants is also expected from regulatory
authorities such as the Indian Serious Fraud Investigation Office and Securities
and Exchange Board of India, as their scrutiny of corporate accounts becomes
much stricter.

Even in the ongoing Satyam investigations, Joshi – speaking from his office
in the western Indian town of Pune – argued that solid evidence could be
generated by forensic accountants using their data analysis tools to interrogate
raw data. ‘We go beyond the figures, and try to ascertain that the given
document is genuine’, he said.

Indiaforensic not only provides fraud examination and forensic accounting
services but also trains professionals.

For the last three years Joshi’s company has been running six-month courses
on forensic accounting, specialising in corporate, banking and money laundering
frauds and has trained 400 accountants. This figure is in addition to various
company employees it has trained under corporate training programmes.


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