Government should not take away our authority to maintain fund for cooperative education and training : NCUI

The Multi-State Cooperative Societies Act of 1984 established the Cooperative Education Fund, which NCUI has managed ever since as per official rules.

PTIUpdated: Sunday, July 31, 2022, 09:14 PM IST
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Dileep Sanghani |

New Delhi: Dileep Sanghani, president of the National Cooperative Union of India (NCUI), stated on Sunday that the government shouldn't take away the NCUI's ability to raise and manage a fund to support cooperative education and training. The Multi-State Cooperative Societies Act of 1984 established the Cooperative Education Fund, which NCUI has managed ever since as per official rules. According to Section 63(1)(b) of the Multi-State Cooperative Societies Act (MSCS), 2002, multi-state cooperative societies must contribute one percent of their net revenues in any given year to the cooperative education fund.

Each year, about Rs.25 crore is collected. In order to acquire management of the fund and use revenues for cooperative education and training through NCUI or any other agency, the cooperation ministry has suggested revisions to the MSCS Act 2002. The NCUI President opposed this provision in the proposed amendments to the MSCS Act, stating that, "the maintenance of Cooperative Education Fund by the government will give a signal that the government wants to control the fund, in which it has no contribution, which is against the autonomous principles of cooperatives. Therefore, the fund should remain with NCUI," he said in a statement.

As a government programme implementer for education and training, NCUI has trained many offices and non-officials from the primary to the national levels in the many cooperative sectoral areas over the years, and this work has been well-received. Sanghani claimed that the government intends to act as the fund's custodian through this proposed modification to the Act so that the fund can be better monitored and administered, and that multi-state cooperative societies that aren't contributing to the fund may do so with penalties.

"However, till date there have been no complaints regarding the use of funds," he said. Based on the views of the representatives of member institutions, NCUI has voiced its concerns over various issues pertaining to the draft amendments of MSCS Act, 2002, including the issue of education fund. The members have felt that the management of the cooperative education fund by the central government will marginalise the importance of NCUI which is an umbrella organisation of the cooperative movement.

"There is also a feeling that under the present arrangement, the government may come up with more stringent utilisation measures of the fund, or have few more nominees in the present committee," he added. The newly set up cooperation ministry has sought comments from various stakeholders on the draft amendments to the MSCS Act.

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