January 18, 1978, Forty Years Ago: FM on demonetisation

Here is what had happened forty years ago, have a look

By: Editorials | Updated: January 18, 2018 12:01 am
Express Front Page, Forty Years Ago, Demonetisation, Union Finance Minister H.M. Patel, H.M. Patel, Editorial News, Indian Express, Indian Express News Express front page forty years ago

FM on demonetisation

Union Finance Minister H.M. Patel said that the demonetisation of high-denomination currency notes was intended to serve the limited purpose of checking illegal transactions rather than as a major step to unearth black money. He told newsmen that certain illegal transactions had “come to my notice” and hence the measure.

Although the currency notes of the denominations of Rs 5,000 and Rs 10,000 were intended to be used for bank transactions and the Rs 1,000 notes were meant to facilitate transfer of money, these notes had come to be used for certain illegal transactions harmful to the national economy.

Asked whether he agreed with the reported observation by the former finance minister, C. Subramaniam, that the step would immobilise the secret funds of certain political parties, Patel said: “Political parties are part economy.”

The moneys held in the form of such high-denomination notes “could be used for smuggling or blackmarketing operations or political purposes also”. In a reply to another question, he said demonetisation of Rs 100 notes would have involved an enormous population and would be a major operation. He, however, did not think it was “an impossible task”. The FM said that of the total currency in circulation at the end of May last, amounting to Rs 8,158 crore, Rs 140 crore was in the high-denomination currencies.

Curbing Black Money

Chandra Shekhar, Janata Party president, said that the demonetisation of high denomination currency notes will directly help reduce concentration of black money, specially in top places.

Saklecha Is MP CM

Veerendra Kumar Sakhlecha, who was elected leader of the Janata Legislature Party by absolute majority, will be sworn in as the new chief minister of Madhya Pradesh. Sakhlecha’s candidature did not go unopposed in Bhopal. Kailash Sonkar, a Dalit MLA, fielded himself as a candidate of the backward classes in state.

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