All efforts today are directed towards reviving the agricultural industry so as to raise it above the ambit of subsistence economy and at the same time enabling it to meet the needs of the growing population. In this connection it could be pointed out that farming on co-operative basis has become an important medium of the present economic upheaval in rural areas of the country. The co-operative farming helps to mitigate the evils resulting from traditional impediments such as inequitable distribution of land, uneconomic size of holding, fragmentation and sub-division of land and the age old methods of cultivation. Above all the movement of co-operative farming imbibes in the minds of the farmers a spirit of sacrifice and a sense of communal living. One of the advantages of the co-operative farming is that it leads to an increase in the production by reducing expenditure. It also derives the benefits of centralised management with decentralised control and use of costly agricultural machinery which is generally beyond the capacity of small farmer producers. In addition it widens the scope of employment for the agricultural labourers through subsidiary business on the farm. There are four types of co-operative farming societies viz., better farming, tenant farming, joint farming and collective farming. Co-operative farming in the district has been organised on the basis of principles underlying the joint farming and collective farming societies. Out of the former there are three societies and of the latter 31 thus giving a total of 34 societies for the whole district.

Co-operative Joint Farming.

Under the co-operative joint farming society land, labour, machinery and other farm equipment required for cultivation are pooled together. The land-holders are either owners or protected tenants who pool the small plots of land as one unit for purposes of cultivation. They however retain the right of ownership of land so pooled. The cultivation is undertaken by the society.

The members working on the farm are paid the current rates of wages. The membership is voluntary and a member enjoys the option to withdraw. The returns from land so pooled are distributed after meeting the expenses of cultivation and the allocation to the reserve fund. The produce is received and disbursed collectively. The co-operative joint farming gives better results due to the economic use of land and the employment of better technique.

Co-operative collective farming.

Under collective farming the right of cultivation and the right  of ownership are pooled. The society procures land either on lease basis or through purchase. Sometimes it is also acquired free. Individual ownership of land is not retained after the formation of the society. The members receive wages for cultivating the land. Profits are distributed in proportion to the wages earned after making provision for the reserves. A member can resign and receive refund of capital subscribed by him after giving due notice.

Constitution of joint farming society.

For starting a joint farming or a collective farming society at least ten members and a minimum share capital of Rs. 500 are required. The members are usually land-owners and permanent and protected tenants who pool their lands for joint cultivation and such other allied purposes. The members then enter into an agreement with the society in the prescribed form. Any new entrant is required to apply for membership of the society by paying the amount of a share. A member can be expelled if he does not observe the conditions of the membership. A society is required to call the annual general meeting which decides about the election of the managing committee, appointment of auditors etc. A special general meeting of the society could also be called as and when required after giving due notice. Every member has one vote. The society is affiliated to the financing agency, block supervising union and purchase and sale society operating in the area.

The managing committee consists of seven members. The committee has full authority to carry on the business of the society. It usually meets at least once a month. The chairman enjoys a casting vote and is selected from amongst the seven members.

In addition every such society has a board of supervision consisting of five members of whom two are from the Agriculture and Co-operative Departments. The board is elected by the members of the society at the time of the annual general meeting. It calls for audit verification report and submits the same before the annual general meeting. It also recommends the programme of agricultural production, schedules of work etc. It also safeguards the movable and immovable property of the society.

There is also a manager appointed and controlled by the managing committee.

The valuation of the land so pooled is made according to the rules framed by the managing committee with the approval of the Registrar of Co-operative Societies, Maharashtra State. This valuation serves as the basis to determine the size of income from the property to be paid to the members. The society arranges for the supply of all the agricultural requisites. The members are required to work according to the directions of the managing committee in respect of all matters connected with production, protection and marketing of agricultural produce. They are liable for penalty up to Rs. 50 individually for every breach of the byelaw.

Constitution of collective farming society.

This type of society is ordinarily formed by landless agriculturists with a view to enabling them to hold land either on lease-hold or free-hold basis. The society owns all the agricultural implements required for productive purposes. The profits are worked out at the end of each year after deducting wages, costs of management and allotment for reserve fund. The profits are then divided in proportion to wages earned by each member.

The proprietary rights of the landlord or the owner or the tenancy rights of a protected or permanent tenant in his land are not extinguished in any of the societies mentioned above. Such rights are however restricted in so far as he has agreed to transfer certain authority to the society and are regulated for the common benefit of all according to the byelaws of the society.

The following statement gives information about the organisation of the co-operative farming societies in the district in  1963-64:―


Type of society

No. of societies

Total membership

Paid up capital in Rs.

Reserve and other funds in Rs.

Total liabilities in Rs.

Total assets in Rs.








Joint farming







Collective farming







State Financial Assistance.

The financial assistance given to the farming societies by the State in 1963-64 was as follows:-

(1) Rs. 20,000 to five collective farming societies for development of land.

(2) A management subsidy of Rs. 5,800 to 13 collective farming societies.

(3) A loan of Rs. 11,250 and a subsidy of Rs. 3,750 to three collective farming societies for construction of godowns.

The functioning of all the three joint farming societies in the district is on a sound basis. Of the collective farming societies only 22 societies are working, the rest being defunct. The movement towards co-operative farming in the district however is still in a primary stage and requires momentum.