A complaint was filed by M Ramesh and Rajesh Kumar Sood in which they had claimed that liquor bottles were taken away in bulk by committee members during the lockdown.

The entrance to New Club in Secunderabad featuring a grey-painted gateImage Credit: C Manikya
news Controversy Tuesday, November 03, 2020 - 12:05

For several months now, there has been a controversy brewing in Secunderabad’s New Club. Finally, on October 17, the Civil Court of Secunderabad vacated an interim injunction given to the committee members and upheld the decision of the disciplinary committee of the club to suspend the managing committee members for their illegal actions.

Ever since two complaints were filed alleging that liquor bottles were taken away by elected representatives during the lockdown, there have been several allegations and counter-allegations doing the rounds.

New Club in Secunderabad’s West Marredpally was established in 1938 and the club has more than 2000 members. Based on the complaints received, the 82-year-old club’s disciplinary committee carried out an inquiry and dissolved the managing committee. They had also issued letters to all the banks informing about the dissolution of the committee members.

The names of managing committee members removed

One of the 9 members of the Managing Committee, M Ramesh, had lodged a complaint with the disciplinary committee of the club alleging that during the lockdown, some of the committee members had taken away liquor bottles in bulk quantity. The complaint read, “Due to government orders of lockdown, our club was closed from March 15, 2020. President P Laxman Goud and seven others have moved large quantities of liquor meant exclusively for our club members to outsiders. They violated state government excise rules. Staffers of the bar also aided them.”

Show Cause notices were issued based on the complaints of Rajesh Kumar Sood and Modem Ramesh. Once the matter was taken to the disciplinary committee, the president of the club, Palle Laxman Rao sent out a message in which he claimed what was happening was part of a false propaganda. The message read, “Mr. Modem Ramesh NC-243, who was not successful against me in the previous election for the post of President, with malafide intentions started false propaganda against me and is circulating doctored recordings.”

Meanwhile, even as the inquiry was underway, the committee members managed to get an interim injunction from the court on September 3.

However, on October 17, the Civil Court of Secunderabad vacated the interim injunction given to the committee members and upheld the decision of the disciplinary committee in suspending the members.

The petition which had been filed by the managing committee members of New Club has been dismissed by the City Civil judge of Secunderabad. The petition filed had challenged the disciplinary committee’s decision to suspend the members of the managing committee. They challenged the decision of the disciplinary committee’s authority to suspend the members of the managing committee and claimed that there was no illegality on the part of the managing committee members.

The Civil court has ruled that the disciplinary committee had followed the laid down rules for registered societies and had also followed the in-house committee hearings and had suspended the members in the rightful manner. With respect to the evidence collected, the court observed that it had been done rightfully and fulfilled all the requirements.

Speaking to TNM, M Ramesh, the committee member who had filed a complaint against other members felt that justice had been delivered. He said, “The court has delivered justice with its verdict. The primary membership and the positions of the committee members has been terminated. We were in the right direction throughout and we were only working in the right way. We never cast aspersions or got into unnecessary debates. Throughout, we were hopeful that the truth will be exposed.”  

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