REGISTRAR OF CO-OPERATIVE SOCITIES Vs. PAULOSE, N.P. AND OTHERS
HIGH COURT OF KERALA
Registrar Of Co-Operative Socities
Paulose, N.P. And Others
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NAVANITI PRASAD SINGH, J. -
(1.) The Registrar of Co - operative Societies, who was the 1st respondent in the writ proceedings is in appeal against the judgment dated 04/04/2017 in W. P. (C) No. 5933 of 2017, by which, the learned Single Judge of this Court allowed the writ petition filed by four members of the Ernakulam District Co - operative Bank Limited, a Co - operative Society registered under the Kerala Co - operative Societies Act, 1969 (for short, 'the Act'). Ext.P1 order dated 18/02/2017 of the Registrar of Co - operative Societies was under challenge in the writ proceedings, whereby, the Registrar of Co - operative Societies, holding that by reason of resignation of nominated members and some of the elected members, the Co - operative Society, in terms of S.28(5) of the Act ceased to have a quorum and consequently, was superseded in terms of S.33(1) of the Act. The learned Single Judge set aside the said order, Ext.P1 and consequently reinstated the Committee. The Registrar, aggrieved by the judgment of the learned Single Judge, is in appeal.
(2.) We have heard learned Advocate General appearing for the Registrar of Co - operative Societies and Sri. B. S. Swathy Kumar, learned counsel appearing for the writ petitioners / contesting respondents.
(3.) The facts are not in dispute. The position that obtained prior to 18/02/2017 may be noted. This Committee of the Co - operative Bank upon election became functional with effect from 13/02/2013. Thus, the present Committee was functional for almost four years and about one year was left of the five years' term. The total members of the Committee was 21, which is the maximum permissible. Out of this 21, two were nominated members as the State was a stake holder and a share holder of the Co - operative Bank. Thus, there were 19 elected members. One of the elected members lost his membership in the Primary Credit Society and as such was disqualified. Thus, there was one casual vacancy amongst the elected members. What now happened was that on 18/02/2017 both the two nominated members resigned. Simultaneously, eight out of remaining 18 elected members also resigned. Thus, out of available 20 members, 10 resigned. The membership was reduced to 10, which is less than half the total sanctioned strength of 21. Making this a ground in terms of S.33(1) of the Act, the Registrar ordered supersession of the Committee. But, while doing so, the Registrar surprisingly constituted an ad hoc administrative committee consisting of three members, who had already resigned. Thus, the charge of the Committee was taken away from the elected members and handed over to the designated administrative committee constituted with members, who had resigned. It is these actions, that were disapproved by the learned Single Judge.;
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