October 8, 2012
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Introduction The Societies Registration Act, 1860 (‘Act’) provided for the registration of literary, scientific and charitable societies. The object of this Act, as enunciated in its preamble, was to make provisions for improving the legal conditions of societies established for the promotion of literature, science or the fine art, or for the diffusion of useful knowledge, the diffusion of political, educational or for charitable purposes. The Act was a central legislation. Also, as per the societies registered in the respective states have to follow the law governing in that state. Prior to 2001, the law relating to registration of a society in Andhra Pradesh was governed by:
- the Societies Registration Act, 1860, in the Andhra Area of the state, and,
- the Andhra Pradesh (Telangana Area) Public Societies Registration Act, 1350 Fasli, in the Telangana Area of the state.
- Charitable societies,
- The military orphan funds or societies established at the several presidencies of India,
- Societies established for the promotion of science, literature, or the fine arts, for instruction, the diffusion of useful knowledge, (the diffusion of Political education),
- The foundation or maintenance of libraries or reading-rooms for general use among the members or open to the public, or public museum and galleries of paintings and other works of arts, collection of natural history, mechanical and philosophical inventions, instruments or designs.
Constitution of SocietyThe constitution of any society, mandal, religious sangh or welfare association etc, should be divided into two parts. 1) MEMORANDUM OF ASSOCIATION It includes the various Clauses as follows:
- Name Clause
- Object Clause
- General Body Member Clause
- Membership Clause
- Subscription Clause
- Meeting Clause
- Committee/ Governing Body Clause
- Legal Procedure
- Every society must display its name outside its office premises in a conspicuous position, legible, in the language in general use in that place.
- Every society must give notice of any change in location of its registered office to the Registrar, within 28 days of such change.
- Every year, the society must furnish to the Registrar a list containing the names and addresses of the members of the Managing Committee and officers entrusted with the management of the affairs of the society, within 15 days from the date on which the General Body meeting is held.
- Every society must file with the Registrar, every amendment or alteration carried out in its Memorandum of Association, and its Bye-Laws.
- Every society must keep at its office, a copy of the Act, a copy of its registered Memorandum of Association and Bye-Laws, minutes book, up-to-date register of members, and such other documents as prescribed by the Act.
- Every society must deliver a copy of its Bye-Laws to each member at the time of admission, and must supply to every member a copy of balance sheet or statement of accounts together with the auditor’s report at its Annual General Body meeting.
- Every society must record the minutes of all proceedings of every General Body meeting and every committee meeting in a minutes book, and communicate the minutes of the meeting to all members invited for the meeting.
- Every society must keep at its registered office, a register of mortgages and charges in which details of all mortgages and charges affecting the property of the society must be recorded.
- Charter : The main document for the trust is Trust Deed whereas for the societies it is Bye laws rules & regulations.
- Members: Minimum of two members are required and there is no maximum limit for formation of trust. Minimum of Seven members are required and there is no maximum limit for formation of trust.
- Meeting : The Indian Trust Act doesn’t contain any provision regarding the meeting of persons, but conducting an Annual General Meeting is mandatory as per the law.
- So, from the above it is clear that that any Sanstha/ Sangh/ Mandal can be registered under Society Registration Act, 1860 provided the Society is for Charitable Purpose and the proper documents have been, as discussed above, submitted with the Department. Generally the time taken to register the Society is One Month.
- The NGOs registered under the Societies Registration Act, 1860, are 'not-for-profit' organizations, and as such they are prohibited from distributing any monetary residual to their own members.