Managing committees of co-operative housing societies will no longer be able to withhold information from members

Hsg soc’s MC must provide info or pay fine

Managing committees of co-operative housing societies will no longer be able to withhold information from members. Failure to provide the information sought could result in a Rs 25,000 penalty. No personal information about a member can, however, be divulged.

The state cabinet on Tuesday approved the addition of a new chapter to the Maharashtra Cooperatives Act, 1960 to deal exclusively with issues related to co-operative housing societies. While the Act requires at least ten members to form a co-operative society, it will now be amended to allow a minimum of five members to form a CHS, said officials. TNN

Ordinance to curb rights of defaulters in a CHS

The government will issue an ordinance to effect changes in the cooperatives Act within a month, said officials.

Co-operative housing societies constitute 40% of all co-operatives in the state and number around a lakh. Nearly 70% of these housing societies are in urban areas. “These are not profit making bodies and many of them have small memberships. However, the law that has been framed is more focused on the large co-operatives such as the district cooperative banks, dairies, sugar cooperatives, spinning mills, etc. The existing laws make the running of a housing society difficult. The introduction of the new chapter is to smoothen the functioning of housing societies and reduce litigations,” said an official.

Also, housing societies that have fewer than 200 members will now be able to choose the returning officer and the assistant returning officer from the panel set up by the election tribunal to conduct elections to the managing committee.

At present a society makes a request to the tribunal which then appoints the officials from the panel and the appointment is often delayed. With societies being allowed to choose the officials, the delay in elections and formation of the new committee can be avoided.

The new chapter will curb the rights of members who do not pay their dues as also ensure smooth transfer of the share certificate to the legal heir besides reservations on the managing committee. It has also been proposed to amend sections 146 and 147 of the Co-operatives Act that deal with what constitutes an offence and the punishment thereof.

Advocate Vinod Sampat, an expert on housing matters, said, “The intent is good but one will need to read the fine print to understand the implications of what has been proposed. For instance, the government proposes to make changes with regard to membership but the press note makes no mention of amendment to section 22/23 of the Co-operatives Act that deals with membership. It is also not clear how the government will make transfer of share certificates easy.”

Advocate Vivekanand Gupta said, “The state must come out with a draft of the proposed ordinance, invite suggestions and objections. It must finalise the ordinance only after getting feedback.”


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