The Bombay high court has allowed a cooperative society to amend its bylaws to extend the term of its chairperson. The HC held on Wednesday that “such an amendment cannot be said to be contrary to the provisions of the Maharashtra Cooperative Societies Act”, nor could it be said to be contrary to the cooperative movement.
“Whether the tenure of a chairperson should be of a particular period or not is a subject matter which is in the realm of the society’s general body and it can never be said to be in violation of statutory provisions of the Act and contrary to the cooperative movement,” said a bench of Justices P B Majmudar and Mridula Bhatkar.
The bench set aside the order of a single judge which had sent back the matter involving the Nashik District Central Coop Bank Ltd to the registrar. The bank’s general body increased the tenure of the chairperson from 12 to 30 months. Some members had taken the matter to the divisional joint registrar, who allowed the amended bylaws last November. But in June, a single judge of the HC set aside the registrar’s order.
The HC said that the registrar was not deciding rival claims of parties or claims between members of the society and the society. In the case of the bank, facts showed the registrar has satisfied himself while granting amendments and registering bylaws. The court said if the registrar felt the bylaws were contrary to statutory provisions or against the cooperative movement, he may not register them.
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