In view of a spike in COVID-19 cases, the Maharashtra government, on Thursday, issued a notification, whereby the annual general meetings of urban cooperative banks (UCBs) and cooperative housing societies (CHS) with less than 50 members can take place offline. However, those having above 50 members will have to be conducted through video conference or other audio-visual means. The notification was issued by the cooperation department desk officer Anil Chaudhari. He has, however, underlined that it will be the sole responsibility of UCBs and CHS to maintain all the records of the annual general meetings (AGMs).
Chaudhari, in a notification, said it is binding on UCBs and CHS to hold AGMs within six months since the completion of the financial year as per the Section 75 of the Maharashtra Cooperative Societies Act, 1960. However, the government has amended Section 75 due to the present coronavirus pandemic. Thereby, UCBs and CHS can now convene AGMs within 12 months after the completion of the financial year.
However, as per the government guidelines, the assembly of 50 people at one place is prohibited due to COVID-19. Therefore, bodies with less than 50 members can hold AGMs offline while following the norms. But UCBs and CHS with more than 50 members will have to hold AGMs through video conference or other audio-visual means to avoid crowding.
It will be mandatory on these bodies to inform the members 15 days before the AGM through SMS or mail or WhatsApp. The AGM notice should be displayed properly at the notice boards of the respective UCBs and CHS and also at their various branches. Further, it will be the responsibility of these bodies to send AGM details before 15 days to the members whose mail address or mobile number will not be available.
Moreover, UCBs and CHS will have to issue advertisements in at least one local paper or district paper or state-level Marathi or English newspaper.