Published:September 5, 2017 1:15 am
The Reserve Bank of India has “no information” regarding the amount of unaccounted or black money extinguished as a result of demonetisation of
Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 currency notes or how much of the unaccounted money has been legitimised through exchange of currency as a result of this decision.
In a sixteen-page reply to questions raised by members of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Finance headed by M Veerappa Moily on July 12, the RBI also told the panel that subject to completion of verification process, it has got back currency notes worth the value of Rs 15.28 trillion till
June 30, 2017.
This is the same figure of junked notes that came back into the system, which RBI made public last week in its annual report saying that of the old notes worth Rs 15.44 lakh crore in the market, Rs 15.28 lakh crore have already been received by the bank. Sources say that the RBI has in its earlier deposition before the committee said it was still counting the notes and hence could not provide the exact numbers of the scrapped notes. It had also told the panel that it had issued tenders for buying currency Verification Processing System (CVPS) machines to speed up the verified counting of the notes.
In a written reply, which was circulated among members recently, the RBI has said that some of these Specified Bank Notes (SBNs) are still lying in the currency chests and the value of the SBNs received by the currency chests have been credited to banks on “said to contain” basis. “Till such time these notes are processed by the RBI for their numerical accuracy and authenticity, only an estimation of SBNs is possible,” it said. The submission was made before the RBI released its annual report last week.
Opposition parties have attacked the RBI for “dilly dallying” in disclosing figures of junked notes that came back to the system and also took on government on the issue of black money as it was stated to be a key objective behind the demonetisation decision. In the last Week of August, the panel failed to adopt a report on demonetisation with BJP members led by Nishikant Dubey finding fault with the draft report, which had said that the measure cost the economy 1 per cent of GDP and suggested that the government should adopt alternative strategy to check counterfeiting of
currency as it cannot implement demonetisation every time. While BJP members opposed the draft report tooth and nail, BJD member B Mahtab failed that the report lacked punch. Congress member Digvijay Singh wanted more time to study the report as it was circulated to members on the morning of the meeting itself.
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