Decided on May 07,1971

S.SUBBA RAO Respondents


Gopal Rao Ekbote J. - (1.)This is an application for the issue of a Writ of Mandamus directing the respondents to discharge their statutory duty of recognising the petitioners, who are 140 in number, as members of the Paidipadu Multipurpose Service Co-operative Society, and to include the names of these petitioners as Voters in the electoral roll arid then conduct the election oi the office bearers of the Society. The material facts are that the petitioners filed applications under Section by of the ANDHRA PRADESH CO-OPERATIVE SOCIETIES ACT, 1964, 1964, hereinafter called "the. Act" on various dates between 24-5-68 and 23-9-1968 with the 1st respondent, who was in charge of the Co-operative Society then for being admitted as members of the said Co-operative Society. They also sent Rs. 5 towards the share capital and 25 paise towards entrance fees. The 1st respondent received the applications as well as the amounts sent by these petitioners. It is however, alleged that the 1st respondent within sixty days from the dates of the receipt of these applications and the money orders served on the petitioners notices to the effect that they should produce evidence to establish that they are eligible to become members of the said co-operative Society. The petitioners admitted that they received the notices and that they gave replies to the said notices. While it is asserted by the petitioners that along with their replies they produced electoral rolls in which their residence within the area of the co-operative society is shown, the 1st respondent in his counter asserted that he has not received any electoral roll along with the replies. The 1st respondent thereafter formally rejected these petitions on different dates between 5-9-1968 and 18-12-) 968. Aggrieved by these orders of rejection, the petitioners preferred appeals under Section 76 (2) of the Act to the Special Category Deputy Registrar of Co-operative Societies, Guntur. It is to these appeals that a reference is .made in the petition which characterises them as representations made to the Registrar by the petitioners.
(2.)These appeals, a copy of which is given to us during the course of the arguments, were returned to the petitioners on the ground that the appeal memos were not properly stamped. The petitioners thereafter did not seem to have properly stamped and represented the appeals before the Special Category Deputy Registrar of Co-operative Societies. Instead they filed the present writ petition on 6-2-1969 for the above said relief.
(3.)The principal contention of Sri P, Satyanarayana, the learned counsel for the petitioners, is that as the orders'rejecting the applications were made beyond 60 days of the receipt of the applications by the 1st respondent, they would be deemed to have become members of the Co-operative Society under the proviso to section 19(3) of the Act. In order to apreciate the implications of this argument, it is necessary to read section 19(3), in so far as it is relevant for our purpose :
"No Society shall, without sufficient cause, refuse admission to membership to any person duly qualified therefor under the provisions of this Act and its bye-laws. Where admission is refused, the decision, with the reasons therefor, shall be communicated by registered post to such person within fifteen days of the date of the decision or within sixty days from the date of his application for membership, whichever is earlier. Provided that if no such decision is communicated to such person, within a period of sixty days from the date of his application for membership, then the society shall be deemed to have admitted him as a member on the date of expiration of such period".
Even a casual reading of this provision would indicate that the proviso would apply to a case firstly where the person is duly qualified to become a member of a given Co-operative Society under the provisions of the Act or its bye-laws ; and secondly that His application which was filed properly was not disposed of within sixty days of its filing and a decision to that effect is not communicated to him within the said period ; It is only when both these conditions are satisfied that the proviso comes into effect and such a person is statutorily deemed to have been admitted as a member on the date of expiration of sixty days.

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