With nearly more than 55,000 Co-operative Societies in the State of Maharashtra holding an Annual General Meeting becomes an important event where many matters regarding Housing Co-operative Society’s problems are discussed. The question is how many days advance Notice should be given in order to call an Annual General Meeting, Adv. R. P. Rathod clears all the doubts.
It is enacted that at least fourteen days clear notice should be given to all the members before an Annual General Meeting can be convened.
The next question is that if a Special General Meeting of a Society is to be called very urgently what is the minimum period for such a notice to be issued? In this connection it has been enacted that at least five days notice is required in order to call a Special General Meeting. As such the Managing Committee of the Society must be very vigilant and bear in mind the time factor before such meetings could be convened.
However the most important question is as the how such a notice could be delivered in as many as three ways. Firstly such notices could be delivered by hand. The Secretary of the Society or the Manager of the Society could deliver such a notice. It is important to remember that the Manager or the Secretary must take the signature of the member concerned in token of having received such a notice.
Now take the case where a notice is sent to a member with a watchman and the member refuses to accept such delivery from the watchman.
What can happen under the Provisions of law?
Is it laid down anywhere that the Notice should be Hand delivered only by the Manager or Secretary?
The answer is certainly not. A member has to accept a notice sent even through a watchman and if he does not do so it is his own flat.
Now what would happen if such a member were to attend a meeting and raise and issue that the notice of the meeting has not been delivered to him and as such no meeting can take place?
In my opinion the behavior of such a member only reflects false pride. It can very well be proved that the watchman went to such a member and he refused to accept the notice from him. It is definitely not necessary that the Secretary or Manager should personally go and deliver such a notice to a member. The channel through which a notice is sent is a very trivial issue and upon such an objection a meeting cannot be postponed.
Secondly, a Notice can be sent under postal Certificate, now that the U.P.C system of Indian Postal services has been discontinued, the said Notice thus should be sent by R.P.A.D. or by Courier Services, which is now been recognized even by the Court of Law. Now what would happen if a member were to state that he has not received such a notice by post or by courier. In any case it is incumbent upon the Secretary of the said Society to produce the acknowledgement of posting certificate or the Courier as the case may be. Thus the acknowledgment or refusal envelop has to be maintained on the records of the society, as it is a conclusive proof of service.
Once such an acknowledgement is produced and presented it is presumed that the member has received such a notice and his objection for postponement of the meeting would be of no avail.
Now is the society has adopted the practice of sending such a notice by registered post or courier services. When a notice is dispatched by such services and even if such a notice has been accepted by any member of the family other than the member himself, it is implied in law that the member knows about the contents of the notice and the notice is duly served upon him. The objection of the member that the family member who had received the notice has not informed him is of no avail at all.
You would be surprised to know that even a notice displayed on the Notice board of the Society is good service. It only means that the members have been informed about the meeting. It may be that certain members may complain that they do not read the Notice Board and they have not been informed officially about either the Annual General Meeting or the Special General Meeting. However once a notice is displayed on the Notice Board then the objection of the member that he has not received the notice convening the meeting would be of the no avail at all. The mere averment of the member that he is not in the habit of reading notices placed on the notice board does not mean that the meeting could be postponed.
Unfortunately there are members who go on pin pointing trivial issues which are of little consequence, in order to hamper the work of the society. Adv. R. P. Rathod thus suggests that that every society should have a powerful President who could give a ruling on each and every issue without fear of favour and who should be bold enough to reject the trivial issues which are of no consequence. The meetings of the society always have to be conducted in a transparent manner & interest of the General members shall always prevail upon the egos of individuals. Moreover a President should only allow the bonafide members to attend the meetings and take part in the discussions and vote, family members of the member should not be allowed to interfere and disturb the Annual General Meeting at all concludes Adv. R. P. Rathod.