Y.S. RANA , CHANDIGARH—Wake up call to the public to search your pockets or have a peep into your lockers to find out whether these have not pre-2005 currency notes as the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) puts June 30, 2015 as expiry date of pre-2005 currency notes from the earlier deadline of January 1, 2015. After June 30, the RBI will completely withdraw from circulation all currency notes domination of Rs 10, 20, 50, 100, 500 and 1000 issued before 2005, hence, to find out whether the notes in your pocket or in locker need to be changed. The currency note that does not bear the year of its printing in the middle of the bottom row on the back side needs to be exchanged.
The RBI has also advised all the banks to facilitate the exchange of these notes for full value and without any inconvenience to the public and solicited the cooperation of the public in withdrawing these notes from circulation. Customers are required to exchange these notes at banks but in case of non-customers, they have to furnish proof of identity to the bank concerned.
Earlier in March 2014, RBI had announced all currency notes issued prior to 2005 will be withdrawn from circulation. Banks were told to exchange any number of notes for both customers and non-customers and it had set a deadline of July 1 for exchanging the notes, after which banks would exchange the notes only for their customers and non-customers had to furnish proof of identity and residence. But subsequently this deadline was extended to January, 2015 which has now been revised again to June 30, 2015.
How to identify pre-2005 currency notes: It is easy to identify pre-2005 notes, as these do not have the year of printing on the reverse side. In the notes issued after 2005, the year of printing is visible at the bottom of the reverse side. Currently the Reserve Bank of India prints currency notes in the denomination of Rs. 5, Rs. 10, Rs. 20, Rs. 50, Rs. 100, Rs. 500 and Rs. 1,000. All the notes printed before the year 2005 do not have the year of printing marked on it. All currency notes printed post 2005 have is year of printing clearly printed in the middle of the bottom row on the backside of the note. If your bank note has no year of printing on the back, it means the note is printed before 2005 and needs to be exchanged with the bank as per the RBI deadline. All notes with the year of printing indicated on the currency note would stay in operation as all of them are posted after 2005.
The official of the RBI here said that its attempt was not to demonetize but to rationalize notes with better security features. Post-2005 notes have added additional security features and help curbing the menace of fake and counterfeit currency. In its March circular, RBI had also told banks to stop re-issue of pre-2005 series notes over the counters or through ATMs.
The RBI had already withdrawn coins in the denomination of 1 paise, 2 paise, 3 paise, 5 paise, 10 paise, 20 paise and 25 paise from circulation with effect from June 30, 2011 and are, therefore, no more legal tender.
Even bank notes of Rs 1, 2 and 5 continue to be legal tender, though these denominations have been coincided and their printing has been discontinued. While talking to financial experts said that the attempt of RBI would kill two birds with one stone. It would help in a big way in rationalization of currency notes with better security features and flushing out of unaccounted money stored in banks and personal lockers.
As per the annual report of the RBI for 2004-05, people across the country will have to exchange 36,984 million pieces of currency notes issued before 2005 which is valued at Rs 3,61,229 crore.
The RBI had issued letters on December 31, 2014 to all chairmen, managing directors, chief executive officers of commercial banks, primary (Urban) cooperative banks and RRBs stated that on a review of the matter, it has been decided to extend the date for exchanging the pre-2005 currency notes to June 30, 2015 and advised them to facilitate the exchange for full value without causing any inconvenience to the public.