There has been too many confusion on whether an “Associate Member” can vote? Or can he be the part of Managing Committee / Officer Bearer?
In accordance with Section 2(19) of the Maharashtra Cooperative Societies Act, an associate member jointly holds a share of the society with others, but whose name is not first in the share certificate. Rule 56 M of the Maharashtra Cooperative Societies Rules, 1961, and Section 2 (19) (b) of the Maharashtra Cooperative Societies Act, 1960, state an associate member can vote and participate in elections but cannot become an office-bearer of the society where his name appears as an associate member of the society register.
In November 2014 the state cooperative election authority (SCEA) clarified that associate members can participate in election i.e. they can vote but was silent on whether they could contest the election of the office-bearers.
Now SCEA has clarified that a housing society’s associate members can be part of the managing committee. This will be a shot in the arm for old cooperative housing societies as more residents can participate in their housing society’s daily affairs.
In most of the old societies, senior citizens owned flats or NRIs owned the flats but would not show interest and associate members were not allowed to participate in managing committee.
“With the consent of the original owner (whose name is first in the share certificate), an associate member can participate in elections and join the managing committee, provided his name is on the share certificate,” said Shrikrushna Wadekar, assistant state cooperative election commissioner.
“Many people don’t put their children’s names in the share certificate as they fear it will pose a problem to mortgage the property. The SCEA has clarified that a person whose name comes second in the share certificate is deemed co-owner of the flat, and thus can contest and be part of the managing committee.
Here what is important that just adding the name of the “Associate Member” in the register does not make him eligible to contest the election of Managing Committee unless his/her name appears on the Share Certificate as the second member.