In case of a company having a share capital and in the case of any other company, if the articles so authorise, any member of a company entitled to attend and vote at a meeting of the company shall be entitled to appoint another person (whether a member or not) as his proxy to attend and vote instead of himself. Every notice calling a meeting of the company must contain a statement that a member entitled to attend and vote is entitled to appoint one proxy in the case of a private company and one or more proxies in the case of a public company and that the proxy need not be member of the company.
A member may appoint another person to attend and vote at a meeting on his behalf. Such other person is known as “Proxy”. A member may appoint one or more proxies to vote in respect of the different shares held by him, or he may appoint one or more proxies in the alternative, so that if the first named proxy fails to vote, the second one may do so, and so on.
The member appointing a proxy must deposit with the company a proxy form at the time of the meeting or prior to it giving details of the proxy appointed. However, any provision in the articles which requires a period longer than forty eight hours before the meeting for depositing with the company any proxy form appointing a proxy, shall have the effect as if a period of 48 hours had been specified in such provision.
A company cannot issue an invitation at its expense asking any member to appoint a particular person as proxy. If the company does so, every officer in default shall be liable to fine up to Rs1,000. But if a proxy form is sent at the request of a member, the officer shall not be liable. Every member entitled to vote at a meeting of the company, during the period beginning 24 hours before the date fixed for the meeting and ending with the conclusion of the meeting may inspect proxy forms at any time during business hours by giving 3 days notice to the company of his intention to do so.
The proxy form must be in writing and be signed by the member or his authorised attorney duly authorised in writing or if the appointer is a company, the proxy form must be under its seal or be signed by an officer or an attorney duly authorised by it.
The proxy can be revoked by the member at any time, and is automatically revoked by the death or insolvency of the member. The member may revoke the proxy by voting himself before the proxy has voted, but once the proxy has exercised the vote, the member cannot retract his vote. Where two proxy forms by the same shareholder are lodged in respect of the same votes, the last proxy form will be treated as the correct proxy form.
A proxy is not entitled to vote except on a poll. Therefore, a proxy cannot vote on show of hands.