Gujarat High Court has upturned one of its own orders and made admission into cooperative societies easy and impervious of office bearers’ whims and fancy.
The three-judge bench of the High Court held two crucial sections of Gujarat Cooperative Society’s Act dealing with admission into cooperative societies constitutional.
”Sections 22(2) and 24 of the Gujarat Co-operative Society Act, 1961, do not violate any of the provisions of the Constitution of India,” a three judge bench of the Gujarat High Court has said in a judgment. A two judge bench of the court had earlier termed these sections ”unconstitutional ”.
The two sections are dealing with the aspect of inclusion of members in the cooperative sector of the Gujarat cooperative society Act.
Sources say the High Court judgment is likely to have significant implications in that it would limit the power of office bearers and make cooperative membership open and easy. This would vastly alter the cooperative scene in Gujarat , experts add.
The bench comprising Chief Justice Bhaskar Bhattacharya, Justice VM Sahai and Justice Ravi Tripathi overturned the decision of a two-judge bench which had earlier held these two sections as ‘unconstitutional’.
Section 22(2) of the act deals with the right of a person to become member of a co-operative society, while Section 24 says that there is a concept of ‘open membership’ in any co-operative society.
Government pleader PK Jani, who appeared for the state of Gujarat, said, “The judgement would have a far reaching effect of functioning of co-operative societies in the state as the concept of open membership would provide a greater opportunity to many eligible persons to become members.”
With this judgment, office bearers of co-operative societies would have limited roles in inducting new members, whereas earlier, they had the sole discretionary power to induct new members.
-with input from Agencies