All denominations of currency notes, beginning with Rs 1000 notes, will be reintroduced with enhanced security features in the coming months, Economic Affairs Secretary Shaktikanta Das announced Thursday. The fresh notes will come with a new colour combination and design, he said. Finance Minsiter Arun Jaitley, who was also present at the press conference, said that banks would remain open over the weekend to facilitate the smooth exchange of the scrapped Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes. Saying that the demonetisation of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 would impact small purchases for a few days, till there is adequate currency, Jaitley said it will be beneficial in the long run.
Jaitley clarified that deposits within the exemption limit won’t come under scrutiny, but those making large deposits of undisclosed money will have to face the consequences. “Deposits within exemption limit can be made without any questions being asked, large amounts will face consequences. It is only those with large amounts of undisclosed money who will have to face the consequences under existing laws,” said Jaitley.
Chief Economic Advisor Arvind Subramanian said the exchange of bank note should be seen as a transfer of “unaccounted wealth from private sector” to the public sector, which will boost economy: CEA Arvind Subramanian.
Meanwhile, as banks and ATMs reopened Thursday, two days after RBI demonetised Rs 500 and Rs 1000 note, people queued up across the country to exchange the scrapped notes. Bank branches and ATM centers saw long, serpentine queues extending to roads today morning. Delhi Police made elaborate arrangements to avoid any untoward incident. There was heavy police presence outside banks, petrol pumps, at Kendriya Bhandars, Safal centres, pharmacies, hospitals, Mother Dairy booths among others.
Speaking to news agency ANI, Minister of State for Finance Arjun Meghwal said: “There is no need to panic; Govt is trying to make available all resources as per demands.”
State Bank of India managing director, Arundhati Bhattacharya said customers can withdraw up to Rs 4000 from ATMs and Rs 10000 from bank counters. There is no limit on the amount one can deposit, she said. Customers wishing to exchange their Rs 500, Rs 1000 notes have to submit a form and prove their identity. The RBI has announced December 30 as the deadline for phasing out all the scrapped notes from circulation.
Meanwhile, Patna witnessed chaotic scenes outside banks due to the limited availability of forms and most customers were made to wait for 2 hours. “We are standing here for last two hours, bank officials are creating nuisance and not allowing us to enter inside,” a customer told ANI.