Himachal Societies (NGO) Registration Act

Himachal Societies (NGO) Registration Act

The British passed the Societies Registration Act in India in 1860. The Act was based on The Literary and Scientific Institutions Act, which was passed in England in 1854.

The main Act is simple enough. However, the states have power (Charitable and Religious institutions fall under state list) to amend the main Act for their own state. Many states have amended the main Act, These amendments create confusion in section references, such as Section 4A for Bihar is different from section 4A for Goa. Others have passed their own independent Act.

It has proved very complex task to get the latest amendments for each state. Therefore, please reconfirm the information presented here before taking any important decisions.

[Societies Registration Act, 1860 as amended by the State]


By filing Memorandum of Association and certified copy of Rules and Regulations (Sec 3). Fee of Rs.50 is to be paid for registration. However, the state government may exempt any particular society from the payment of registration fee. All documents to be filed with the Registrar of Societies in Solan District or Chamba District.


You are allowed to alter the objects of the society, change its name or merge with another society. For this, you have to convene two general body meetings and three-fifths of the members have to approve the change (Sec. 12).

Change of name becomes effective only when approved by the Registrar of Societies and the registrar issues a certificate with altered name. The Registrar can also direct a society to change its name. In such a case, the society has to change its name within a period of three months from the date of direction (Sec. 12A).

List of Governing Body Members

You should file this every year within fourteen days of annual general meeting. This should be filed in January, if general meetings are not held (Sec. 4). If a society fails to file this list, it is liable to a fine of Rs. 50.


No specific provisions.


At least three-fifths (60%) of the general body members have to vote for dissolution of the society at a special meeting (Sec. 13). Government's consent is required for dissolving the society, if it is a member or a contributor or interested in the society. However, the government can neither dissolve a society on its own, nor can it take over the society.

Disposal of property upon dissolution

A society's property cannot be distributed among its members. However, three-fifths of the members present at the time of dissolution can decide to give the property (left after satisfaction of all debts and liabilities) to another society.


All documents of the society are open to public for inspection on payment of Re.1. Copies can be taken and also can be certified by Registrar (Sec. 19).

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