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Govt. Should Ensure federal features intact for cooperatives: parliamentary standing committee

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Govt. Should Ensure federal features intact for cooperatives: parliamentary standing committee

On cooperatives, the Parliamentary Committee has asked the government to ensure that the federal features are retained.

Recommendations of Parliamentary Standing Committee:

  • While formulating plans/programmes/activities etc. at the national level, “exercise utmost prudence” should be exercised so that the federal features of the country are not affected.
  • The new National Cooperative Policy should be formulated only after due consultation with all the stakeholders.
  • Necessary legal and institutional frameworks should be created to protect the interests of the members of all multi-state co-operative societies.
  • Co-operative institutions should devise an effective mechanism to provide them adequate opportunities or facilities for their survival and growth and development.

Cooperatives in India:

  • “Co-operative Societies” are a subject in the State List under the Seventh Schedule of the Constitution.
  • By the 97th Constitutional Amendment Act, Part IXB was added to the Constitution.
  • By this amendment, some basic rules were laid down in relation to co-operative societies. For example- a co-operative society can have a maximum of 21 directors, a fixed tenure of five years for the elected members of the society, etc.
  • However, in Union of India Vs Rajendra Shah & Ors Case (2021), the Supreme Court struck down certain provisions of the 97th Constitutional Amendment Act. The Supreme Court, in its judgment, had held that certain provisions of the amendment violate the powers of the state legislatures with respect to the subjects in the State List.
  • The Supreme Court also said that co-operative societies clearly come under the jurisdiction of the state. Parliament is allowed to make laws only in the case of multi-state co-operative societies.

Legal Framework for Co-operative Societies

Different states have made state cooperative society laws for the governance of their cooperative societies. For co-operative societies operating in more than one state, the central government has enacted a law called the “Multi-State Co-operative Societies Act, 2002”.

Source – The Hindu

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