97.62 percent of ₹2,000 currency notes already returned, says RBI

Around 97.62 percent of the 2000 banknotes in circulation as on May 19 last year have already been returned, said the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in an announcement made on Friday.

Besides, the total value of 2,000 banknotes in circulation, which was 3.56 lakh crore at the time of withdrawal in May last year, has now fallen to 8,470 crore on February 29, 2024, the announcement further states.

For the unversed, the banking regulator had announced the withdrawal of 2000 denomination banknotes from circulation on May 19, 2023. RBI keeps publishing the status of withdrawal from time to time like it did today.

Past announcement

The last announcement with regards to 2,000 currency notes was made on Feb 1, 2024 when it was revealed that 97.50 per cent of the banknotes in circulation as on May 19, 2023 were returned.

Notably, the facility for deposit and exchange of currency notes was available at all bank branches up to October 7, 2023.

Additionally, the facility for exchange of the 2000 banknotes has been available at the 19 Issue Offices of the Reserve Bank since May 19, 2023.

Since Oct 09, 2023, RBI Issue Offices have also been accepting currency notes from individuals as well as entities for deposit into their bank accounts.

Further, members of the public are sending 2000 banknotes through India Post from any post office within the country, to any of the RBI Issue Offices for credit to their bank accounts.

And not to mention that the 2000 banknotes continue to be legal tender.

Why were the notes discontinued?

While announcing discontinuation of notes on May 19, 2023, RBI told the stakeholders that around 89 percent of the 2000 denomination banknotes were issued prior to March 2017 and are at the end of their estimated life-span of 4 to 5 years.

Importantly, the total value of these banknotes in circulation fell drastically from 6.73 lakh crore on March 31, 2018 (comprising 37.3 percent of notes in circulation) to 3.62 lakh crore (comprising only 10.8 percent of notes in circulation on March 31, 2023).

It was also observed that this denomination was not commonly used for transactions, RBI had noted that time in the announcement.

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