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Philosophy

The Concept of Co-operation The strength of co-operative movement emanates from its
ability to empower people who are individually weak and often helpless. The spirit of co-
operations encourages people to come together on the basis of equality to achieve their
economic interests. Voluntary association of individuals is the important aspect of any
co-operative endeavour. Equality is assured to all the individuals involved in an unselfish
atmosphere. The goal is to achieve the common economic interests of the group of
individuals who have come together for the purpose. According to the Committee on co-
operation in India (Mclagan committee) " the theory of co-operation is very briefly, that
an isolated and powerless individual can be in association with others and by moral
development and mutual support obtain, in his-degree, the material advantages available
to wealthy or powerful person, and there by develop himself to the fullest extent of his
natural abilities. By the union of forces, material advancement is secured and by united
action self-reliance is fostered, and it is from the interaction of these influences that it is
hoped to attain the effective realisation of the higher and more prosperous standards of
life which has been characterised as ' better business, better farming and better living".

The basic characteristics which are common to all the co-operative endeavours are
defined under principles of cooperation. They provide the framework within which all the
co-operative bodies operate with some variations.

COOPERATIVE SECTOR

Cooperation The philosophy of co-operation endeavours to empower isolated


individuals who are individually weak , to come together in a democratic manner on the
basis of equality to achieve the desired common economic interests. The Co-operative
Planning committee defined co-operation "as a form of organisation in which persons
voluntarily associate together on a basis of equality for the promotion of their economic
interests". The concept of co-operation emphasises on the collective action of individuals
to achieve common goals which may not have been possible for one isolated individual.
The principles of co-operation define the basic characteristics of any co-operative
organisation. These principles form the common thread that run through all the co-
operative societies which marginal variations.

India has a rich history of co-operative movement. The movement had drawn inspiration
from similar endeavours throughout the world. 'Nidhis' were a pre-cursor to the Indian
cooperatives. In this scheme, the members used to contribute monthly for a period. They
were given loan facility which could be repaid in instalments. The co-operative
movement has gone up from strength and today India has a strong movement catering to
various sectors

The Concept of Co-operation


The strength of co-operative movement emanates from its ability to empower people
who are individually weak and often helpless. The spirit of co-operations encourages
people to come together on the basis of equality to achieve their economic interests.
Voluntary association of individuals is the important aspect of any co-operative
endeavour. Equality is assured to all the individuals involved in an unselfish atmosphere.
The goal is to achieve the common economic interests of the group of individuals who
have come together for the purpose. According to the Committee on co-operation in India
(Mclagan committee) " the theory of co-operation is very briefly, that an isolated and
powerless individual can be in association with others and by moral development and
mutual support obtain, in his-degree, the material advantages available to wealthy or
powerful person, and there by develop himself to the fullest extent of his natural abilities.
By the union of forces, material advancement is secured and by united action self-
reliance is fostered, and it is from the interaction of these influences that it is hoped to
attain the effective realisation of the higher and more prosperous standards of life which
has been characterised as ' better business, better farming and better living".

The basic characteristics which are common to all the co-operative endeavours are
defined under principles of cooperation. They provide the framework within which all the
co-operative bodies operate with some variations.

Principles of Cooperation

The International Co-operative Alliance in 1937 provided the following principles popularly known as
Rochadale Principles:

i. Open Membership
ii. Democratic control with single vote per head
iii. Distribution of surplus to the members in proportion to their transactions
iv. Limited interest on capital
v. Political and religious neutrality
vi. Cash trading
vii. Promotion of education.

The first four principles were declared as essential principles. The last three were non-essential. To
widen the spectrum of co-operative movement and to broad base it, the International Co-operative
Alliance (ICA) appointed a new commission to form fundamental principles. The commission in its
report submitted in 1966 stated the following as the fundamental principles of co-operation:

i. Voluntary, open and active membership


ii. Democratic control
iii. Patronage dividend
iv. Promotion of education

v. Mutuality