Exchanging Currency Notes will be Hassle-Free, Says RBI

The members of the public can exchange notes which were printed prior to 2005 at bank branches at their convenience, according to a Reserve Bank of India advisory issued on Friday.

The central bank said the rationale behind its move to withdraw banknotes printed prior to 2005 is to remove them from the market as they have fewer security features compared to banknotes printed after 2005.

The public can easily identify the notes to be withdrawn as the notes issued before 2005 do not have the year of printing on the reverse side.

The recall of banknotes comes in the backdrop of rising cases of counterfeit currency and the role of black money in stoking inflation in the economy.

Global practice

The RBI pointed out that it is standard international practice to withdraw old series notes.

Further, from July 1, 2014, members of public can exchange any number of these old series notes from the bank branches where they have their accounts.

However, to exchange more than 10 pieces of Rs 500 and Rs1000 notes, non-customers will have to furnish proof of identity and residence to the bank branch in which she/he wants to exchange the notes.

The RBI reiterated that the notes printed prior to 2005 will continue to be legal tender.

RBI assurance

“The RBI assures that it will continue to monitor and review the process of withdrawal of old series notes so that the public is not inconvenienced in any manner,” said a RBI statement.

Complete withdrawal

A couple of days ago, the RBI said that after March 31, 2014, it will completely withdraw from circulation all banknotes issued prior to 2005.

From April 1, 2014, the public will be required to approach banks for exchanging these notes.

The RBI statement said, “Banks will provide exchange facility for these notes until further communication.” 

Business Line, New Delhi, 25-01-2014

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