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Evicting A Managing Committee Member
By Gajanan Khergamker

Several CHSes in Mumbai deal with situations where a committee member has to be evicted. Here's the legal procedure for the same:

If a motion of no-confidence is passed by twothird majority of the total number of committee members entitled to vote at the election of managing committee members, any officer of the society shall cease to hold office.

The requisition for such a special meeting shall be signed by not less than one-third of the total number of members of the committee who are entitled to elect the managing committee member, as the case may be, of the committee and shall be delivered to the registrar.

Within seven days from the date of receipt of the requisition, the registrar shall convene a special meeting of the committee. The meeting shall be held on a date not later than fifteen days from the date of issue of the notice of the meeting. The meeting shall be presided over by the registrar or such officer not below the rank of an Assistant Registrar of Cooperative Societies authorised by him in this behalf. The registrar or such officer shall, when presiding over such meeting, have the same powers as the president or chairman while presiding over a committee meeting has, but shall not have the right to vote.

The meeting called under this section shall not, for any reason be adjourned. The names of the committee members voting for and against the motion shall be read in the meeting and recorded in the minute book of committee meetings.

If the motion of no-confidence is rejected, no fresh motion of no-confidence shall be brought before the committee within a period of one year from the date of rejection of such a motion.

Cooperation Takes A Back Seat In Most Societies
By Gajanan Khergamker

The problem with cooperative housing societies is that there is poor little ‘cooperation’ in the entire process. Very often, cooperative housing societies have members who play truant by refusing to pay up dues; pose a veritable nuisance to other members and generally cause a nuisance to the entire society.

On an average, about 20 per cent of cooperative housing societies have members who are the usual ‘trouble-maker’ sort. While the degree of trouble they can cause varies from society to society, the nature of the scourge is more or less the same. What makes matters worse is that there’s poor little by way of legal remedy to the issue.Cooperative housing societies cannot legally force a member to pay up by interfering with his cable/water or power connection, as they would invite adverse legal issues for the society.

In one particular case, a housing member leased out a parking space to an outsider. The outsider went on to convert the space into a garage for repairs of automobiles. The society filed a petition in the cooperative court to evict the non-resident outsider who had caused many problems to the residents by way of hampering parking, right of passage and noise pollution.

After losing the case in the cooperative court, the non-resident appealed to the appellate tribunal and then in the High Court. Simultaneously, during the process, the society members who had initiated proceedings changed and the new society board’s members were less inclined to follow up the case.

Owing to a string of favours and bribes by the outsider, most society members were reluctant to evict him. The case was finally lost and the once-illegal garage went on to procure official status.

In order to recover dues or eviction of a ‘non-paying’ resident, the cooperative housing society files an application before the assistant/deputy registrar of cooperative societies under Section 101 of the Cooperative Societies Act. A judicial order passed is binding on the ‘non-paying’ resident who has the option of appealing to the registrar/joint registrar of cooperative societies.

An appeal to this order can be made to the commissioner at Department of Cooperative Societies, Mantralaya. If the order is to be appealed further, under Article 227 of the Indian Constitution, a writ petition can be filed in the High Court, which then exercises its power of superintendence over subordinate judiciary.

By a special leave to petition, under Article 136 of the Indian Constitution, the Supreme Court can be approached for a review of the High Court order.

However, it may be noted that instead of obtaining a solution from legal processes, cash-strapped cooperative housing societies simply lose several funds in the pursuit of justice while ‘rogue’ members stand to gain.