30k fake notes of Rs 2,000 seized since demonetisation

Security agencies and police have seized at least 29,733 fake notes of Rs 2,000 denomination since the new note was introduced in November last year following demonetisation exercise.

The figure was arrived at through an analysis of answers to two questions by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) in Parliament on March 14 (Lok Sabha) and April 5 (Rajya Sabha). The face value of seized Rs 2,000 fake notes is Rs 5.94 crore.

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Gujarat leads the pack in seizures of fake Rs 2,000 notes after November 9, 2016 , a day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced demonetisation of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes, followed by Delhi.

While 26,730 notes were seized in Gujarat, 1,261 fake notes were seized in the capital. The NIA has seized 22,730 notes in National Investigation Agency (NIA) officials while in Delhi, city police have seized all the notes.

While March 14 response dealt with figures from across the country, Wednesday’s answer by the MHA deals with seizure from border states only. Officials said this number could go up as some states are yet to provide full details and it is an ongoing process.

The MHA has said that there have been instances where it has been found that the fake currency has been smuggled from neighbouring countries.

From 17 border states alone, 27,949 fake notes of Rs 2,000 denomination with a face value of 5.58 crore were seized.

The state police in these states have also recovered 12,956 fake notes of Rs 500 denomination since demonetisation exercise. However, numbers of both new and old currency notes of Rs 500 denomination have not been reported separately by states.

Amid concerns over counterfeit notes, the government last week indicated that it plans to change security features of higher denomination banknotes of Rs 2,000 and Rs 500 every 3-4 years.

Sources said the new notes had no additional security features and were similar to those in the old Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 notes.

Investigators also suggested that counterfieters have managed to replicate at least 11 of the 17 security features in the new Rs 2,000 notes. These included watermark, Ashoka Pillar emblem, the guarantee clause with the Reserve Bank of India Governor’s signature and the denomination number in Devanagari script.

Also Read: https://sheminjoy.wordpress.com/2017/03/15/3692-fake-notes-of-rs-2000-seized-since-demonetisation/

(An edited version appeared in Deccan Herald on Apr 6, 2017)

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