12 Impacts of Amended Maharashtra Co-operatives Act on Housing Co-operatives
On Feb 14th, 2013, Maharashtra Co-operative Societies Act 1960 was amended vide an ordinance. The impact of this will be felt immediately by Co-operative Housing Societies.
This change was mandated by the 97th Constitutional Amendment, which was at various stages of process since 2006.
Please read about the impact in the attached Powerpoint. You will be pleasantly surprised!
I gave a talk on this yesterday at DNA's Real Estate Exhibition at Goregaon, where a two-day seminar was conducted by Maharashtra Societies Welfare Association (MSWA). The PPT from that talk is attached, along with Gazette of 97th Constitutional Amendment.
In the months to come, we will have to hold many meetings in the neighbourhoods of every city, to ensure that people understand what the amendments in MCS Act requires of them, what it mandates them to do, and how it empowers them.
Contrary to all the negative vibes that are being spread about 97th Amendment etc., I feel that a lot of good winds are blowing. However, we have the duty to spread our sail to receive the good winds!
AMENDED MAHARASHTRA CO-OP. SOCIETIES ACT - HIGHLIGHTS:
1. Empowers active members. Non-serious participants cannot participate in decision-making.
2. Power to expel dormant members or compel them to become active is given to co-operative societies.
3. No Administrators can be appointed for most co-op societies. Instead, active members will be “authorized officer” or “interim committee”.
4. Regular education & training to groom fresh leaders through Apex Co-operatives.
5. No more ignorant MC members. Managing Committee must attend regular training at least once in five years.
6. Stop washing dirty linen in co-op. court. Resolve internal differences through “Grievance Redressal Committee”.
7. Co-op. court to encourage Win-Win compromise, and discourage litigation. This will reduce clutter of neighbour-to-neighbour conflicts, and let co-op court focus on important cases.
8. Mandate and power to get professionals’ help for CHS management. Adopt modern methods of management, record keeping etc. and stop being frogs in the well!
9. Strengthen Audit function. Duty of auditors, Registrar etc. to pinpoint responsibility for fraud and register FIR. Also, mandate for auditor to present audit findings including irregularities in every AGM. If they don't, Auditors will be disqualified.
10. Realistic penalties for offences. Fine and prison sentences have been substantially increased.
11. Disqualification of errant MC members is now very easy, and much more long-lasting. Disqualified MC members will be debarred for contesting for 5 years.
12. State Election Authority to monitor elections closely. No more bullying by a small clique retaining power by token elections by show of hands etc!
All this and much more is there to make co-operatives truly participative democracies... but we have to act, educate co-op. society members and let them know about their new rights!
Come, let us create a mass movement to educate and train co-op housing societies in Mumbai and MMR region to understand and utilize co-operative legal structure!
Please see the attached PPT and gazette.
PS: Each and every action of government, parliament and political establishment is NOT tainted by corrupt motives; even a defective clock shows the correct time twice a day! Please let us shed our habitual negativity and cynicism. We (civil society and activists) need not find fault with everything that the government does; otherwise, we will become paralyzed, and the only thing that we will be capable of doing is armchair criticism! In the end, governance is determined by our actions, and not only the actions of the government.