What is Cooperative Society ?

The term cooperation is derived from the Latin word ‘co-operari’, where the word “co” means ‘with’ and “operari” means ‘to work’. Thus, the term cooperation means working together. So those who want to work together with some common economic objectives can form a society, which is termed as cooperative society.

According to Indian Cooperative Societies Act 1912

Cooperative society as a society, which has its objectives  for the promotion of economic interests of its members in accordance with cooperative principles.

According to Wikipedia

cooperative (also known as co-operativeco-op, or coop) is “an autonomous association of persons united voluntarily to meet their common economic, social, and cultural needs and aspirations through a jointly-owned and democratically-controlled enterprise”.

Features of Cooperative Societies

There are many features of cooperative societies. Some are the following:

  • Voluntary Association

The membership of cooperative societies is voluntary. A person can join cooperative society anytime or leave as per his desire. Religion, gender & caste do not matter in cooperative society. Membership is open to all.

  • Number of Members

A minimum of 10 members are required to form a cooperative society. In multi-state cooperative societies the minimum numbers of member is 50 from each state in case the member are individuals. The Cooperative Society act does not specify the maximum numbers of the cooperative society members.

  • Registration of the Cooperative Society

In India the cooperative societies registered under Cooperative Societies Act 1912 or the state Cooperative Societies Act. The Multi-state Cooperative Societies are registered under the Multi-State Cooperative Societies Act 2002. Once the society registered, the Society becomes a separate legal entity.

  • State Control

Since registration of cooperative societies became compulsory. From that time the every cooperative society came under the control and supervision of the government.

  • Return on Capital Investment

The members get return on their capital investment in the form of dividend. When the new member joins the society he/she needs to give some registration fees and needs to deposit some mandatory amount every month. At the end of financial year members get some return on their capital investment.

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