Registration of Socities
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Registration of a cooperative Society is done by the Registrar of Co-operative Societies who is an official (appointed by the Govt. ) responsible, inter alia, for maintaining/keeping official record of co-operative societies registered under section 8 of the H.P. Cooperative Societies Act, 1968 (Amended 2006). Registration, under the ibid Act, is a formal process of recording the name, title and address of the society on the official list/register of the societies maintained for the purpose when an application under the provisions of section 7 of the ibid Act for the registration of a co-operative society is made to the Registrar in the prescribed form duly appended to the ibid Rules, accompanied by three copies of the proposed bye- laws along with other information about the society, its founder applicant members who shall not be less than ten when each of such ten persons is an individual (where all the applicants are not individuals , the number of such applicants shall not be less than five) and are required to be above the age of 18 years (in case of individuals ) and competent to contract under section 11 of the Indian Contract Act, (9 of 1872). The said application is to be signed by all individuals, but in the case of a society which proposes enrolment of other co-operative society or societies as member(s), it should be signed by the duly authorized person(s) on behalf of every such society and where all the members of the society are not societies, by all other members.
The minutes of the proceedings of the first general body meeting are also to be enclosed in triplicate. The registration of the society is allowed only when the application complied with the provisions of the ibid Act/Rules and the aims and objects so framed/adopted provided for the promotion of the economic and social interests of its members or the public in accordance with the co-operative principles (section 4) and not inconsistent with the principles of social justice and further that the proposed bye-laws were not contrary to the provisions of the ibid Act/Rules, and touched upon matters as enlisted under Rule 9. During the organization process the services of the field functionaries of the Cooperative Department may also be taken by the founder members for their convenience as the necessary papers are to be submitted through them under their attestation/recommendations.
For the registration of a co-operative society, minimum share capital requirements are essentially to be met out and minimum value of one share is to be realized from the members. Milk, Consumer, Marketing, Weavers, Processing, Industrial, Transport, Micro-Hydel, all such societies require fulfillment of minimum share capital requirements/subscriptions as per the different norms fixed for them in this regard by the Registrar/Govt. from time to time.
However, before an application is made to the Registrar for registration/ organization/setting up of a co-operative society, certain fundamental precautions are to be observed by the founder members. The registration should not be asked for on the spur of the moment. As a matter of fact, a co-operative society is an economic enterprise with a social responsibility, and therefore requires proper planning, adequate finances, capable human resources, able leadership and most importantly time to think carefully about it. The founder/applicant members should make an extensive survey of the concerned area wherein the co-operative is being set up regarding the occupation of the people of the area in order to determine as to according to them what sort of needs of theirs could be fulfilled by establishing a society. For instance, if agriculture is the main occupation of the people, then a marketing society is a natural choice. If some sort of raw material is available in the area then an Industrial society, and if pulses, oils, foodgrains etc., are their main needs then a consumer cooperative store, and if easy credit is not available for them then a thrift and credit society is to be established.
The interest of the people of the area regarding the fulfillment of their common needs through mutual help and based upon collective effort is to be gauged properly. Lack of interest and principle of voluntary membership may prove to be an impediment afterwards as regards the business of the society.
The social situations and circumstances, traditions and practices, are the other factors to be taken into consideration. If people seem to be divided on caste and communal lines and do not display any solidarity, then the success of the society is not possible. Their social inhibitions may hamper the progress of the society. On the contrary, if people live in complete social harmony then the ground for success of an organization/ society is a solid one.
People have good and bad occasions in their respective lives. In a good society people often stand by each other in times of weal and woe. They even offer help in discharging social and economic responsibilities of each other. Such behavioural patterns/attitudes based on mutual understanding and cooperation of people act as a sure stepping stones for the successes of a cooperative society.
Mostly, those people agree to organize into an association/ society who desire to fulfill their economic needs, and who are not well off. Therefore, the society should be set up for the service and benefit of such people who may become active and guiding members of the society.
Share capital requirements of the society by way of contributions/ subscriptions/raising of loans and funds vis-à-vis the investments/expenditures etc., are to be ascertained at the initial stage, only then the next step is to taken to register the society.
Membership should be decided according to the business of the society. However, minimum requirement of membership is to be met, as required for registration, but such lesser membership is not ideal for Marketing, Processing, Consumer, Thrift & Credit, or an Industrial cooperative society etc. Therefore, more and more people are to be involved/contacted/associated during the initial surveys in order to ensure sustained annual increase in membership.
Registration of same type of societies in a particular area is not advisable. Even organization of more than one thrift & credit cooperative society in a particular part of the same area should be avoided. This will preclude unnecessary competition and tension between the societies. As far as the matter of area of operation is concerned, this is to be decided according to the operations of the society. Two or three villages are adequate for a service society, whereas for a marketing society the area of a Sub-Tehsil/Tehsil is thought to be appropriate.
The offices/ Godowns/ Sales and production centres etc. of the society are to be set up at the appropriate places which should be centrally located, adjoining to roads, markets, banks, postal and telegraph offices. A proper/extensive care is to be taken in this respect. Instances are abound that godowns/ buildings were constructed at places which were away from approach roads and now not being put to use due to this after their constructions.
An able and competent managing committee adequately conversant with the principles of co-operation is possible only when a proper study of people in respect of their education, profession, their knowledge of principles of cooperation, co-operative laws/rules is made.
The bye-laws of the society are also to be framed/ adopted with great care and caution which may enable smooth functioning of the society. The copies of model bye- laws may be obtained from the HIMCOFED, Shimla-4. The bye-laws will come into force only when they are approved by the Registrar.