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By Vinod Sampat, Advocate

Q.2. It is compulsory to be Managing Committee member ?

Ans. 2. Members of the Managing Committee do not receive any salary . They are supposed to offer their selfless services. It is my humble opinion that if a member of the society is not able to devote time than should not be a committee . I would also like to suggest that Managing Committee members are supposed to administer the property. For the above said purpose they are at liberty to appoint staff members including a manager, accountants, clerks, peons ,etc. Personally I am of the opinion that societies having regards to the availability of funds should always appoint a manager . This will save the valuable time of the office bearers. Also the members of the society will be aware as whom and at what time they should approach for their grievances . Appointment of a manager also helps to maintain discipline and responsibility amongst the office staff. Societies have to work within the framework of MCS Act, MCS Rules & the Bye Laws of the society . As per the society’s bye laws, the Managing Committee has no right to take decisions or pass resolutions by issuing circulars.

Q. 3. In our society their is heavy leakage between Flat No. 401 & 301 As a result of it the members refuse to pay the dues till the problem of leakage is rectified ? Please advise us as to how we should solve the abovesaid problem ?
Ans. 3. The problem of leakage and repairs is recurring problem present in a number of societies . As per Bye Law No.155 it is the responsibility of the committee to maintain the property of the society in good condition at all times. For facilitating discharge of the abovesaid function Bye Law No. 50 (a) empowers the secretary accompanied by other members of the committee to enter a member’s flat to examine its condition .The secretary of the society should also make a report to the committee indicating the particulars of the repairs that have to be carried out by the society at its own cost and those that have to be carried out by the members at their cost. It is my humble suggestion that the expenses pertaining to leakage should be shared equally by the three parasites i.e. the member from whose flat the leakage arise , the member who is affected and the society . It has been my experience that if the abovesaid resolution of sharing is passed than the abovesaid problem can be solved in a short span of time . The reason behind it is that according to the provisions of Bye Law No. 50 ( c ). The office bearers of the society shall have authority to enter the flat and cause the repairs to be carried out. It is generally noticed that the member from whose flat the leakage organises the member residing in the top floor is reluctant to entertain member who is residing below him (i.e the member who is the suffering on account of the leakage ). However if the society intervenes the member who is suffering on account of leakage will not have to suffer for a long span of time. Whatever may be the grievance of the member, the member should not withhold dues of the society.

Q.4. We are residing on the ground floor of a building consisting of six floors ? After adoption of the new model bye laws the secretary of the society has insisted that the residents on the ground floor will also have to pay lift expenses irrespective of the fact that we do not use the lift . Please guide us about our liability towards lift expenses ?
Ans. 4. I would like to draw your attention to Bye Law No.71 (v) which clearly states that all expense pertaining to repairs and maintenance of lift including the charges for running the lift will have to be paid equally by all the members irrespective of the fact that they was the lift or not . It is my sincere advice to you and all the residents on ground floor that though you may not be using the lift you will have to pay the lift expenses.
5. There are ten shops on the ground floor and the employees working in the abovesaid shops misuse the bathroom. Some of the drivers also waste water while cleaning the cars from the commercial water line? Please suggest to us the ways where by the society can have expenses on water charges ? We have been given to understand that the BMC has increased the water charges ? Please guide us about the amounts that have to be recovered by us from members towards the same ?
Ans. 5. It has been seen that in some societies their is one water tap from the commercial water line from which water is used for (a) Bathroom etc. for shopkeepers.(b) Watering the plants .(c)Cleaning of vehicles . (d) Washing of floors etc. Their are differential water rates for residential use and for commercial use . The new rates w.e.f. 01/04/1993 for water charges are Rs. 5/- for 10,000 liters for residential use and Rs. 120/- for 10,000 liters for commercial use . By using water from the commercial water line you must have a separate water line from residential water line and watering the plants, cleaning of vehicles, etc. should be carried out from the abovesaid residential water line. The keys of the room where the water taps are installed should be given to a responsible person and if possible a push cock tap should be affixed to the commercial water tap so that substantial funds of the society can be saved. I would also suggest that the security not to allow outsiders to use the society resources for their advantage. The amounts towards residential water charges bill has to be recovered equally from the flat holders and the amounts towards commercial water charges bill has to be recovered equally from the shop keepers.