Move is aimed at giving people access to Maharashtra Cooperative Societies Act, its rules and bylaws which, makers say, will bring down disputes by 15-20 per cent
The brain behind the mobile app Rajesh Lovekar, deputy registrar of cooperative department with advocate Shreeprasad Parab, expert director at State Housing Federation and Anoop Kumar, principal secretary of state cooperative department
Cooperative housing societies in the state will no longer have to face problems related to the cooperative law and its bylaws as all related information will now be available on an app. The state housing federation, with the consent of the state cooperative department, has developed a mobile application called Housing Co-op Master which will be available to CHS office-bearers and members free of cost.
The app is the brainchild of Rajesh Lovekar, deputy registrar of cooperative department, and advocate Shreeprasad Parab, expert director at state housing federation. There are more than 1.25 lakh registered housing societies with over 30 lakh members and 1.20 crore residents across the state.
How the app came into force
Lovekar said, “It is known that in most cooperative housing societies, misunderstandings and disagreements between office-bearers and its members are due to ignorance of the law. Unfortunately, allegations and counter-allegations set in which could be prevented had residents known the actual provisions of the law.”
A screenshot of the app
“Most societies do not have serious issues like financial fraud. In most cases, the members and office-bearers complain to the deputy registrar about trivial issues such as society maintenance charges, levying of interest on default payments, associate member rights, etc. due to lack of understanding of the legal provisions. I am sure that with the launch of this application, nearly 15 to 20 per cent of such trivial cases can be done away with,” he added.
Advocate Parab said, “We have to understand that the subject of cooperative society and its governing acts, rules and bylaws are vast and it is not feasible to impart knowledge to such a large number of societies in physical form. Hence, we made an attempt to use mobile technology to reach the common man.”
‘Will act as referral book’
When asked if the end user can download the content or have any advanced search engine features, Lovekar said, “We have accumulated all state government circulars, notifications and relevance provisions under the MCS Act, rules and bylaws and on each topic listed in the application. At present the end user can only read the relevant legal provisions on topics he selects. At present, they cannot download the content. We may provide such features, including search engine facilities, in future.”
“We are also coming up with booklets on each of the topics stated in the mobile application, so that the end user can use them, as a referral. These books will have copyright for preventing any misuse or attempts at stealing of our Intellectual Property Rights,” said advocate Parab.
Anil Kawade, commissioner of cooperation and registrar of co-operative societies in Pune, said, “The app is an attempt to make a successful example of the phrase: the change in the conduct of the society brings changes in legal education. This app will help to educate the public at large.”
About the app
The Housing Co-op Master app is available for Android, iOS as well as desktops and can be found in the respective app stores. “It gives the user access to housing laws on various topics such as society registration, society membership, transfer on death of a member, NOC for sale or rent, election process, general body meetings, car parking, leakage issues, deemed conveyance, structural audit, redevelopment, etc.” said Parab.
Experts praise effort
CA Ramesh Prabhu, founder-chairman of MahaSEWA, said, “Housing Co-op Master has been developed by experienced hands from the department and like-minded people.” Advocate Vinod Sampat, expert in cooperative housing society issues, also lauded the app and said, “By and large, it is a good effort which will be appreciated by the members of cooperative societies.”