It’s been eight months since the government demonetized currency, yet the RBI has no idea of the total number of notes that were rendered useless.
Senior Congress leader and former Union Finance Minister P. Chidambaram on Thursday took a dig at RBI Governor Urjit Patel over his reported remarks that the central bank will procure more machines to count demonetised notes.
“RBI buying note counting machines eight months after demonetisation! Has the RBI not heard of ‘leasing’,” Chidambaram tweeted.
Eight months after demonetisation (November 8, 2016), Reserve Bank of India Governor Urjit Patel refused to give the total amount of junked notes deposited with various banks, saying they are still being counted.
Patel is learnt to have told a meeting of Parliamentary Standing Committee on Finance that the process of counting junked notes was still on and the central bank has to verify fake notes for which specialised machines are being procured.
While some machines have been procured, tenders have been floated to procure more, Patel was quoted by sources as having told the committee.
Patel said the total money in circulation in the country now was Rs 15.4 lakh crore against Rs 17.7 lakh crore at the time of demonetisation, according to sources. (IANS)