The Madras High Court has revived a 2018 Government Order (G.O.) appointing a Special Officer to manage the affairs of Cine Technicians Association of South India due to the disputes between its elected office-bearers and members, with each one trading charges against the other.
Justice C.V. Karthikeyan directed the government to name the Special Officer within two weeks and made it clear that he/she could hold office for nearly one year. The judge also permitted the officer to enter the association with police assistance and take control of its accounts and other aspects.
He further ordered that the Special Officer should regularise the accounts, prepare a list of association members and proceed with the conduct of elections in the manner known to law. The orders were passed on a batch of three writ petitions filed between 2017 and 2019 with respect to the association.
“It is clear that all the parties to all the three writ petitions are at war with each other. It is extremely difficult to decipher as to who has grievances against whom and on whose side each person is. All of them appear to be enemies and none of them appear to be friends. Those who are affected by all these quarrels are the members,” the judge lamented.
He wrote: “As is always the case with every association, the office-bearers have taken a very conscious decision to look only after their personal interests and not the interests of the members of the association.”
Pointing out that the 2018 G.O. appointing a Special Officer could not be implemented because of a status quo ordered by the High Court within 16 days of its issuance, the judge said: “The Special Officer could have hardly located the address of the association before which the order of status quo had been passed. Thus, the quarrels continue.”
He remarked that the petitioner association “has been functioning like any other association without a head and if there is a head without a mind, and if there is a head with a mind, then without a body. In effect, the association can be categorised as having been brought to an end naturally owing to the quarrels among the office-bearers.”