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Dr. Apurva Joshi
Dr. Apurva Joshi
Dr. Apurva Joshi is a regular contributor on the subjects of Money Laundering and Compliance. She is a board member of Quick Heal Technology Limited.

Forensic accounting, the powerful and specialized practice within the realm of accounting, has emerged as a crucial tool in combating financial fraud and ensuring financial transparency. At the forefront of this dynamic movement stands Indiaforensic. It is a pioneering force dedicated to unraveling the mysteries of corporate fraud and promoting integrity in financial practices. Rooted in the ageless wisdom of Kautilya, the renowned ancient Indian scholar from the Mauryan era, Indiaforensic continues to make remarkable strides in the world of forensic accounting, safeguarding financial systems from illicit activities. In the year 2007, it started the certification course on forensic accounting. This course provides a detailed explanation of the contribution of Kautilya.

Understanding the Essence of Forensic Accounting

Forensic accounting, often likened to financial detective work, involves a meticulous examination of financial records and evidence in anticipation of potential litigation. The term “forensic” implies the application of accounting knowledge in legal settings. Forensic accountants act as financial detectives to unearth fraudulent activities and uphold financial integrity.

Forensic accounting is a specialized field of accounting that deals with the investigation of fraud and other financial crimes. It is a rapidly growing field, as the increasing complexity of financial transactions makes it more difficult to detect and prevent fraud.

In India, the importance of forensic accounting has been recognized for centuries. The ancient Indian statesman and economist Kautilya wrote extensively about the different types of fraud and how to detect them. His work, the Arthashastra, is still a valuable resource for forensic accountants today.

Kautilya’s Insights on Fraud

Kautilya’s insights on fraud are still relevant today. He identified four main types of fraud:

  • Corruption: This is the abuse of power for personal gain.
  • Embezzlement: This is the theft of money or assets from an employer or organization.
  • Fraudulent misrepresentation: This is the intentional deception of another person in order to gain an advantage.
  • Forgery: This is the creation of false documents or the alteration of genuine documents.

Kautilya also provided detailed advice on how to detect and prevent fraud. He emphasized the importance of having a strong system of internal controls, and he suggested that businesses should regularly audit their financial records.

Indiaforensic and Kautilya

Indiaforensic released a report in 2007 where it showed how Kautilya, Tenaliraman, and Birbal are the icons of forensic accounting.

It is a top company in India that offers forensic accounting services. It was established in 2002 by a team of skilled forensic accountants who wanted to deliver excellent services to their clients. Indiaforensic has a remarkable history of successful cases and has been part of many well-known fraud investigations in India.

Indiaforensic has drawn on Kautilya’s insights in its work. The organization has published a book called “Students Handbook on Forensic Accounting,” which is a comprehensive guide to the use of Kautilya’s work in forensic accounting. The book covers topics such as the different types of fraud, how to investigate fraud, and how to present evidence in court.

The Benefits of Using Kautilya’s Insights

There are several benefits to using Kautilya’s insights in forensic accounting. First, Kautilya’s insights are based on centuries of experience in dealing with fraud. This means that they are also likely to be more accurate and effective than newer methods.

Second, Kautilya’s insights are very practical. They provide specific advice on how to detect and prevent fraud. This makes them easy to apply in real-world situations.

Thirdly, Kautilya’s wisdom is about Indian culture and context. It makes it highly relevant for the Indian business environment. Since his insights are India-specific, they are easily adapted to address the specific challenges and nuances of businesses in India. This cultural relevance makes Kautilya’s teachings even more powerful in the fight against financial fraud and in promoting financial transparency in the Indian corporate landscape.

Kautilya’s Forty Ways of Embezzlement

Among Kautilya’s remarkable contributions is his exploration of forty ways of embezzlement. These enduring insights provide a profound understanding of the intricacies of financial frauds, transcending time to remain relevant in contemporary corporate settings. By harnessing and also applying Kautilya’s wisdom, Indiaforensic unlocks a treasure trove of knowledge to combat financial malpractices effectively.

  1. What is realized earlier is entered later.
  2. What is realized later is entered earlier.
  3. The price is raised before delivery or purchase of an inventory.
  4. The price is reduced before the delivery or purchase of an inventory.
  5. The year is made discrepant with respect to the lunar months.
  6. The month is made discrepant with respect to the days.
  7. Divergence in the original source of funds or even income.
  8. Divergence in the head of income.
  9. Divergence in the wages or the headcount of labor.
  10. Divergence in the performance of functions.
  11. Divergence in the calculations of the business.
  12. Divergence in the quality of products.
  13. Divergence in the pricing of products & also services.
  14. Divergence in weights and measures.
  15. Divergence in measuring.
  16. Divergence as to container vessels.
  17. What is sold is not entered.
  18. What is entered is not also sold.
  19. What is sold is entered as what is not sold.
  20. What is not sold is entered as what is sold.
  21. What is received is not entered.
  22. What is entered is not received.
  23. What is received is entered as what is not received.
  24. What is not received is entered as what is received.
  25. What is spent is not entered.
  26. What is entered is not also spent.
  27. What is spent is entered as what is not spent.
  28. What is not spent is entered as what is spent.
  29. What is taken is not entered.
  30. What is entered is not taken.
  31. What is taken is entered as what is not taken.
  32. What is not taken is entered as what is taken.
  33. What is given is not entered.
  34. What is entered is not given.
  35. What is given is entered as what is not given.
  36. What is not given is entered as what is given.
  37. What is lost is not also entered.
  38. What is entered is not lost.
  39. What is lost is entered as what is not lost.
  40. What is not lost is entered as what is lost.


Kautilya who is also known as Chanakya is the undoubted inspiration for the work done by Indiaforensic on the subject of forensic accounting. Application of these 40 ways can be found in the reference books of Indiaforensic.

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