The government has assured a parliamentary panel that it has a cyber crisis management plan to check cyber frauds and is mulling a joint action with Bangladeshi authorities to detect counterfeit currency. The assurance came after banks and MPs expressed concerns over the frauds following digital money push post demonetisation and fake currency menace. The government had cited checking of counterfeit currency as one of the key reasons for demonetisation.
The finance ministry submitted a note to Congress MP M Veerappa Moily-led Parliamentary Standing Committee on Finance saying that the plan for countering frauds has been formulated for implementation by all ministries, departments of the Centre, state governments, their organisations and critical sectors. “Cyber Crime Cells have been set up in all states and Union Territories for reporting and investigation of cyber crime cases,” the note said. It added that the Security Printing and Minting Corporation of India Ltd and Bharatiya Reserve Bank Note Mudran Private Limited will train Bangladeshi and Indian police officers to tackle fake currency.
The government told the panel that Rs 14.492 lakh crore were in circulation as on May 12 compared to Rs 17.7 lakh crores on November 8 when the demonetisation was announced.
The note said that the income tax department conducted over 1,100 searches and surveys and issued more than 5,100 notices for verification of suspicious high value deposits from November 9, 2016 to January 10, 2017. “These actions led to seizure of valuables of more than Rs 610 crore, which includes cash of Rs 513 crore. Seizure of cash in new currency notes was Rs 110 crore. Further the undisclosed income detected in these on-going investigations till January 10 was more than Rs 5,400 crore,” the government told the panel. It added that 164 writ petitions/PILs, 10 representations, one representation under public grievance and two legal notices have been received so far after demonetisation.
These petitions were mainly filed in the Supreme Court and the high courts of Allahabad, Calcutta, Bombay, Rajasthan, Kerala, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh/Telangana, Gujarat, Punjab and Haryana, Chhattisgarh, Guwahati and Uttarakhand.
The panel was told that the government was examining issues related to demonetisation and digitisation.