Demonetisation failed? Fake Rs 2000 notes from Pakistan enter India, says reports
The seized notes have shown that at least 11 of the 17 security features in the new Rs 2,000 notes had been replicated.
In the election season, the opposition has been continuously slamming the Modi government for its demonetisation move and BJP has vehemently argued the step was against black money hoarders and currency counterfeiting. However, the recent report has shed light on ongoing currency counterfeiting across the border.
The Indian Express reported that it has taken barely 2 months for Pakistan-based counterfeiters to come out with fake Rs 2,000 notes. The money is being pumped into the country via the permeable India-Bangladesh border. The shocking details were surfaced following recent arrests and seizures made by National Investigation Agency (NIA) and Border Security Force (BSF), the report says.
According to the report, recently a 26-year-old man, who hails from Malda in West Bengal, was arrested in Murshidabad for carrying 40 fake notes of Rs 2,000 denomination. During the interrogation, the accused revealed that fake notes had been printed in Pakistan, allegedly with the help of the Inter Services Intelligence (ISI). It has been learned that smugglers were required to pay Rs 400-600 in genuine currency for each fake Rs 2,000 note, depending on the quality, the report says.
In an antagonizing shock, the seized notes have shown that at least 11 of the 17 security features in the new Rs 2,000 notes had been replicated. They included the transparent area, watermark, Ashoka Pillar emblem, the letters ‘Rs 2000’ on the left, the guarantee clause with the RBI governor’s signature and the denomination number in Devanagari on the front, the report says.
Experts said that the motif of Chandrayaan, the Swachh Bharat logo and the year of printing had been copied on the reverse side. Although the print and paper quality of the seized counterfeits were poor, they resembled genuine notes, it says. Besides, the seized notes had the water mark and a crackling sound, similar to genuine currency, the report says.
The report said that the officials of the Securities Printing and Minting Corporation of India Limited (SPMCIL) believe that the newly introduced notes had no additional security features and were similar to those in the old Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 notes. According to a 2016 study conducted by the Indian Statistical Institute (ISI) in Kolkata, the value of Fake Indian Currency Note (FICN) in circulation was pegged at Rs 400 crore.
In its reply to Parliamentary Committee on demonetisation, Union Finance Ministry had said that smuggling of fake currency has totally stopped post demonetisation and the tax department has seized Rs 515 crore in cash, including Rs 114 crore of new currency notes, up to January 10. Banning of 500 and 1000 rupee notes was intended to curb terror financing and as per the Intelligence reports the smuggling of fake notes has come to a “total halt”, the finance ministry had said.