Our housing society is ten years old and comprises of approx. hundred residential tenements. Two of the buildings facing the road have roughly fifteen shops on the ground floor. The entrance to the parking area and the residential flats is separate and does not interfere with the business activities of the shops.
During the formation of the society, the builder did not deposit the share capital amount for the shops in the cooperative bank as it did for all the residential tenements. Neither the shops came forward requesting their admittance in the society nor the managing committee of the society made them the members. Besides, the residential members always perceived their admittance in the society as nuisance since generally the shops have nothing at stake, have little interest in the smooth running of a residential society and collection of the maintenance charges from them is always problematic. The managing committee therefore did not collect any maintenance charges from them as they were not admitted as members and were not availing of any services from the society such as drinking water (some of the shops are into eatery business and were wanting water connection from the overhead tank which is not designed to cater to such needs), security services, parking space etc.
In view of the above stated facts, my question is - Has there been any violation of the Society Act by not making the shops as members of the society? Is it mandatory to include them as members? And if the answer is in affirmative then which clause of the society bye laws has been violated?
I am seeking legal opinion on the matter.