Did the Government print currency abroad?

While Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Tuesday refused to respond to the allegations, dismissing them as ‘frivolous’, former Union Minister and Supreme Court lawyer Kapil Sibal described marked discrepancies in size, design and features in high denomination currency notes as possibly the ‘biggest financial scam’ after Independence.

Calling upon the Prime Minister, Finance Minister and the RBI to clear the confusion, Sibal posed to them the following questions:

  • Why are there discrepancies in the size of Rs 500 and Rs 2000 notes between the specifications provided on the RBI website and of those in circulation?
  • Where were these currency notes printed?
  • Were they printed both here and abroad and does that explain the discrepancies?
  • Did the Government outsource the printing of currency notes and if so, was it done with RBI’s permission?

Describing it as either a case of criminal negligence or criminal culpability, Sibal alleged at a media briefing that the BJP appears to have been the beneficiary. Reminding people of social media posts immediately after demonetisation, when several BJP leaders were seen to have abundant supply of cash while others were hard put to withdraw their own money, Sibal wondered if one set of currency notes was printed for the ruling party and another set for the common man.

How can both the sets of currency notes with different sizes, design and features still turn out to be genuine, he asked.

Sibal also referred to the Assembly election in Uttar Pradesh, when the BJP appeared to be flush with cash. The government owed an explanation to the people, said Sibal while demanding that the government end the confusion over the currency notes.

Showing 40 differences in size and designs of Rs 500 and Rs 2000 notes, Sibal made a video presentation during the briefing. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley accused the Congress of making irresponsible statements and of looking for scams where there were none.

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