Is it possible for NRIs, PIOs, and OCI cardholders to become Committee Member?
Cooperative societies frequently face the following question:
- Who can become member of the society ?
- Who can become a committee member ?
- Who can become Chairman / Secretary / Treasurer ?
We will attempt to answer questions such as whether NRI, PIO, or OCI card holders can become members, committee members, and Chairman / Secretary / Treasurer of a society in this article.
Answer: NRI, PIO, or OCI card holders can become members, members of committees, and also hold the posts of Chairman, Secretary, and Treasurer in a society.
We have further broken it down into six parts to help you understand:
Part 1: Property purchases by NRIs, PIOs, and OCIs
Under Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999, RBI Master Direction – Acquisition and Transfer of Immovable Property defines who is a NRI/PIO/OCI cardholder and defines which immovable property they can acquire.
- Indian citizens living outside India who are non-residents are called Non-Resident Indians (NRIs).
- According to Section 7(A) of the Citizenship Act, 1955, an Overseas Citizen of India is a person residing outside India who holds an Overseas Citizen of India Card.
- In accordance with Section 7(A) of the Citizenship Act, 1955, an overseas citizen of India is entitled to a Citizenship Card.
Immovable property acquisition
- Any immovable property in India (other than agricultural land, plantation properties, and farm houses) can be purchased by an NRI or OCI.
- If an NRI or an OCI is a relative as defined by section 2(77) of the Companies Act, 2013, they are entitled to receive a gift of any immovable property (other than agricultural land, plantation property or farmhouse) in India.
- In accordance with the provisions of the foreign exchange law in force at the time of acquisition, an NRI or OCI can acquire any immovable property in India through inheritance from a person residing outside India.
- It is possible for an NRI or OCI to inherit any immovable property in India from someone who resides there
Part 2: Cooperative Society Membership
Who can be a member of a society is defined by section 22 of the Gujarat Cooperative Society Registration Act.
Individuals capable of contracting under the Indian Contract Act, 1872.
Part 3: The 1872 Indian Contact Act
In accordance with Section 11 of the Indian Contract Act of 1872.
“Who is competent to contract — Anyone who is of legal age to contract according to his jurisdiction, and who is of sound mind and is not disqualified from contracting by any law to which he is subject”.
Part 4: Membership in the Society according to its bylaws
Most cooperative societies use a model byelaw that defines who can join the society:
- It is open to anyone who owns a flat, unit, office, shop, or plot within the society’s work area.
- An individual who has signed an undertaking to adhere to the society’s rules and bylaws.
- The person who has been approved by the managing committee after submitting a written application in Annexure ‘B’ of the membership application.
- An individual who has paid an entrance fee of Rs. 5..
- An investor who has subscribed for at least five shares and paid for the share money.
Part 5: Eligibility for voting and committee membership
A member whose name appears on the society’s voters list is eligible to vote and to run for a committee position.
A member of the committee must be a member of the society who is entitled to vote under Rule 32 of the Gujarat Cooperative Society Act.
Part 6: Eligibility for Chairmanships, Secretaries, and Treasurerships
It is up to the committee members to decide whether they want to hold the positions of Chairman, Secretary, and Treasurer.
A non-resident Indian can buy a property according to FEMA. New or old buildings are managed under different types of formations by builders, and recently they have been formed into cooperative societies. As seen in each part above, there is nothing in the Cooperative Societies Act or Byelaws that prevents an NRI/PIO/OCI card holder from becoming a committee member or holding a position as Chairman / Secretary / Treasurer.