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Baraha Saini Vidyalaya Samiti Chhata v. State Of U.P. Thru' Registrar Firms Society & Chits & Ors. - WRIT - C No. - 56042 of 2003  RD-AH 16102 (28 September 2007)
HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE AT ALLAHABAD
Civil Misc. Writ Petition No. 56042 of 2003
Baraha Saini Vidyalaya Samiti Chhata, Mathura ....... Petitioner.
State of U.P. and another ........... Respondents.
Hon'ble Krishna Murari, J.
Heard learned counsel for the parties.
Baraha Saini Vidyalaya Samiti Chhata, Mathura is a society registered under the Societies Registration Act, 1860 (for short 'the Act'). The renewal of the society was lastly made in 1995 which was for a period of 5 years and came to an end in the year 2000. Thereafter, an application for renewal was made on 30.8.2003. The application was made by Prakash Chandra Gupta, the petitioner claiming to have been elected as the Secretary of the Committee of Management of the Society in election held on 10.1.2001. Deputy Registrar vide letter dated 6.9.2003 required the petitioner to file necessary documents in support of his claim. The necessary documents are stated to be filed by the petitioner in the office of Deputy Registrar on 12.9.2003. A complaint dated 15.9.2003 was made by respondent no.3 and one Jag Mohan Varshney before the Deputy Registrar that the petitioner and one Sanmal Das both are claiming to be the Manager of the Society and are acting against the interest of the society as such the complainant may be given an opportunity of hearing in the matter before grant of renewal. Another complaint was filed by respondent no.4. Respondent no.5 also moved an application dated 10.11.2003 for renewal of the society claiming to have been elected as Secretary in the election held on 7.1.2001. Deputy Registrar vide order dated 3.12.2003 granted approval to the election set up by respondent no.5 and granted renewal. Aggrieved, the petitioner has approached this court by filing instant petition.
It has been urged by learned counsel for the petitioner that there being a bonafide dispute with regard to the election, the same was liable to be referred to the Prescribed Authority under Section 25(1) of the Act and the Deputy Registrar had no jurisdiction in the matter.
In reply it has been urged that dispute before the Deputy Regisrar was with regard to forgery and fabrication of documents for the purpose of renewal of the certificate of registration and for filing the list of office bearers and thus the matter was not liable to be referred to adjudication by Prescribed Authority under Section 25(1) of the Act. It has further been contended that the Deputy Registrar after hearing the parties and considering the evidence recorded a finding that the documents submitted by the petitioner were forged and and fabricated and the proceedings submitted by the answering respondent were genuine and thus were accepted.
I have considered the arguments advanced on behalf of rival parties and perused the records.
Section 25(1) of the Act reads as under :
"25. Disputes regarding election of office-bearers. - (1) The prescribed authority may, on a reference made to it by the Registrar or by at least one-fourth of the members of a society registered in Uttar Pradesh, hear and decide in a summary manner any doubt or dispute in respect of the election or continuance in office of an office-bearer of such society, and may pass such orders in respect thereof as it deems fit :
Provided that the election of an office-bearer shall be set aside where the prescribed authority is satisfied -
(a) that any corrupt practice has been committed by such office-bearer; or
(b) that the nomination of any candidate has been improperly rejected; or
(c) that the result of the election in so far it concerns such office-bearer has been materially affected by the improper acceptance of any nomination or by the improper reception, refusal or rejection of any vote or the reception of any vote which is void or by any non-compliance with the provisions of any rules of the society."
Petitioner was claiming to have been elected as a Secretary in the election said to have been held on 10.1.2001 whereas the claim of contesting respondent was based on election said to have been held on 7.1.2001. Thus there was a dispute in respect of election of the office bearer between the parties and in view of provisions of Section 25(1) of the Act the Deputy Registrar had no jurisdiction to interfere in the matter and appropriately a reference ought to have been made to the Prescribed Authority for adjudication. The legal position in this regard stands settled by the pronouncements in the case of Committee of Management vs. Secretary, Arya Kanya College, (1999) 2 U.P.L.B.E.C. 77, Sita Ram Rai & others vs. Additional Registrar, Firms, Societies, Chits , Gorakhpur, 2003(52) ALR 246 and catena of other decisions.
In view of above, the impugned order dated 3.12.2003 passed by the Deputy Registrar cannot be sustained and stands quashed. In normal course, after quashing the impugned order of Deputy Registrar, the matter ought to have been sent to the Prescribed Authority for adjudication but the court cannot shut its eyes to the glaring facts of the case.
Undisputedly, the last renewal of the Society was made in 1995, which came to an end in 2000. The renewal was applied by both the parties in 2003, each setting up different election said to have been held in 2001. On the basis of election held in 2001 the petitioner applied for renewal in 2003. Similarly, the contesting respondent also applied for renewal in 2003. There is nothing on record to indicate that annual list of managing body was ever filed by either of the two contesting parties though the same is mandatorily required by Section 4 of the Act. The mere fact that annual list of managing body was not filed by either of the parties till 2003 even though both claim the elections to have been held in January 2001, is in itself sufficient to cast a serious shadow of doubt on the elections set up by both the parties. Further there appears to be no compliance of the proviso to Section 4 as there is nothing on record to show that list submitted by either of the parties was counter-signed by old office-bearers.
From the records of the petition, this court is satisfied that neither of the two elections set up by the rival parties can be said to be validly held. Even otherwise, more than six years have elapsed since the alleged elections set up by both the parties said to have been held in the year 2001. In such circumstances with a view to bring to an end the ongoing litigation with regard to office-bearers of the society, the court feels appropriate to direct that fresh election for constituting the Executive Committee of the Society be held by the Deputy Registrar in exercise of power conferred by Section 25(2) of the Act.
In such view of the matter, the writ petition stands disposed of with the direction to Deputy Registrar, Firms, Societies and Chits, Agra - respondent no.2 herein to hold fresh election of the Executive Committee of the Society. He shall publish a tentative list of the members of the General Body of the Society inviting objections within a period to be specified. After receipt of the objections, he shall decide the same by a reasoned order and shall notify the electoral college. The elections of the office-bearers shall be held from the list so notified in accordance with the bye-laws of the Society. The entire exercise may be completed by the Deputy Registrar within a period of four months from the date of production of a certified copy of this order before him.
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