Responsibilities, liabilities & Rights of Members

With Powers comes responsibilities & with Rights comes duties says Adv. R. P. Rathod

1.           Society may by resolution passed in general meeting held for the purpose, expel a member for acts which are detrimental to the interest or proper working of the society under Sec 35 of the M.C.S. Act

2.           If any member who has been persistently defaulting payment of his dues or has been failing to comply with the provisions of the bye-laws may be expelled from the society under the provisions of Rule 28 of the M.C.S Rules

3.           Expulsion from membership may involve forfeiture of shares held by the member–rule 28

4.            A society have a charge upon the shares or interest in the capital and on the deposits, of a member or deceased member in respect of any debt due from such member, The society can set off any sum credited or payable to such member in or towards payment of any such debt

5.           Under the provisions of Sec 81(4) every member and past member of the society has to furnish such information in regard to the transaction and the working of the society as the Registrar, or the person authorised by him, may require

6.           Section 83(3) (a) of the M.C.S. Act says , that members of the society has to furnish information regarding their possession of books, produce of books and papers relating to the society which are in their custody or power and otherwise to give all assistance to the inquiry officer in connection with inquiry which they can reasonably give.

7.           Every member has to keep his flat clean -Bye-laws 48

8.           No member shall without the previous permission of the committee in writing, make any additions to or alterations in his flat.

9.           Every member has to allow the Secretary of the society, accompanied by any other member of the committee, to enter upon his flat to examine its condition for ascertaining the repairs if any necessary.

10.       In respect of repairs to be carried out by the member at his cost, the committee can issue notice to the member, indicating the particulars of repairs necessary to his flat.

11.       No member can stock or store any kind of goods or materials, which are combustible, obnoxious or other goods without previous permission of the committee.

12.       No member shall do or suffer anything to be done in his flat which may cause nuisance, annoyance or inconvenience to any of the members of the society or carry on practices which may be repugnant to the general decency or morals of the members of the society

Under the provision of Section 32 of the Maharashtra Co-operative Societies Act, 1960 the members have free access to certain books and documents free of cost. They are as follows:

1)          A copy of Maharashtra Co-operative Societies Act, 1960 and Rules 1961.

2)          Bye-laws of the concerned society.

3)          Last audited Annual Balance Sheet.

4)          Profit and Loss Account.

5)          List of the members of the Managing Committee.

6)          Register of members.

7)          Minutes of General Meeting and Committee Meetings.

8)          Relevant portion of books and records where its transactions are recorded.

The members of society have-

a)          Right of voting at General Body Meeting

b)          Right to contest election for the post of any committee or Board of Directors.

c)           Right to know the affairs of the society.

d)          Right to transfer shares or interest in the society, subject to provisions of Sec. 29

e)          He is entitled to refer the dispute between him and the society touching the business or constitution of the society to the Co-operative Court for decision – Sec.91.

f)           He may tender voluntary resignation of his membership

g)          Right to refer disputes between him and the society to the appropriate authority for the decision.

h)          Right to get refund of share money on amalgamation, division, conversion etc

i)             Right to withdraw in case of charge of liability.

j)            He has freedom from attachment of shares

k)          Right to nominate success or

l)             Right to receive profits and dividends

m)        Right to apply for enquiry.

n)          Right to appeal against winding up.

Any member of the housing society can demand papers excluding papers referred under Section 32 and Rule 30. The application for inspection should be made by the member to inspect account books/papers. These papers must be provided to the member within seven days from the date of application with free of cost. Managing Committee can charge Rs 10/- per hour for inspection of papers, but the proposal to charge fee must be sanctioned in the meeting of the Managing Committee. The copy of papers can be provided to the member with proper charge within 30 days.  The bye-laws regarding charges may be amended accordingly if there is difference between previous charges and present charges.

Following certified copies of document can be obtained from the Registrar's office on payments of fees:
1.           Application for registration of society.

2.           Certificate of registration.

3.           Bye-laws of Societies.

4.           Amendment of bye-laws of society

5.           Order of cancellation of the registration of society.

6.           Audit memorandum of the society.

7.           Annual Balance Sheet.

8.           Order under Sec 88.

9.           Order of Supersession of a committee or removal of any member thereof

10.        Order referring a dispute for decision

11.        Any other order against which an appeal is provided.

Fee: 40 paise for every 200 words or less in English and 50 paise for every 200 words or less in Marathi. If a person is held liable towards obligation to make full payment of the cost of the particular tenement which to be alloted to him, he has every right to question the correctness or otherwise of the demand there of A. I. Umrani v/s. Saraswat Suburban Co-operative Hsg Society Ltd 1985 CTJ 357.

Refusal to allow inspection: An application can be made to the Registrar under sec 154 of the M.C.S. Act, when the society refuses to inspect the document.

A dispute can be raised under Sec 91: Sajid v/s. Ismail Co-op Housing Society, 1966 C.T.D 102.

Member has right to transfer his flat: A flat held by a member in a Tenant Co-partnership Society can be attached and sold in execution of decree which shows that a member has saleable interest in a flat allotted to him Member has right to transfer his flat and society cannot put unreasonable restriction on the said right: Ramesh Himmatlal Shah v/s. Joshi AIR 1975 SC 1470.

Withdrawal of membership: A member can resign his membership after giving 3 months notice, in the prescribed form to the Secretary of the society as provided under rule 21 (1) of the M.C.S. Rules, but it cannot be accepted unless such member has made payment of the charges payable to the society in full.

If any charges are found payable by the member to the society, it is the duty of the Secretary of the society to intimate the same to the member within 15 days of the receipt of the notice of resignation, advising him to make payment thereof within 30 days of the date of intimation.

If there are no charges of the society outstanding with the member, the committee has to accept the resignation of the member and the decision is to be communicated to the member within 3 months from the date of the receipt of notice of the resignation.

Associate member can give his resignation at any time by writing the letter of resignation to the Secretary of the society through the member with whom he had the shares of the society jointly, Nominal member occupying the flat on behalf of a firm, company or any other body corporate, can resign his nominal membership at any time by writing a letter of resignation to the Secretary of the society through the firm, company or any other body corporate, on whose behalf he is occupying the flat.

-      Adv. R. P. Rathod.