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Two variants of new Rs 500 note: RBI says printing flaw due to ‘rush’

In just few weeks of circulation, the two variants of the Rs 500 note may encourage counterfeits, checking which was one of the main intents behind the government's move to ban old Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes.

In a huge question mark for the government and Reserve Bank of India’s claim of preparedness for demonetisation, the RBI has now accepted that there is a defect in the new Rs 500 notes.Β The submission from the central bank came after two variants of the new Rs 500 note surfaced and went viral on social media.

A tweet by Aabshar who goes by the handle @Scepticindian highlighted the different notes and said ,”Two notes, totally different design. Is government giving fake currency?”

In just few weeks of circulation, the two variants of the Rs 500 note may encourage counterfeits, checking which was one of the main intents behind the government’s move to ban old Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes.

However, in its defence, the RBI said the printing defect was due to the rush in the wake of demonetisation and that there is nothing to panic.

Reports quoted RBI spokesperson as saying, “It’s not a variant. Such a printing deficiency can happen once in a million. It is a valid legal tender and can be freely used in transactions. But if someone does not want to use it and return it to the RBI, that too can be done and we will give them full value.”

It is to be noted that the RBI has said exchange of banned notes will continue to be available at the counters of the central bank up to current limits per person as hitherto. However, such exchange facility is no longer available at other banks’ counters.

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