Demonetisation: Yet to reconcile scrapped notes, says RBI

The Reserve Bank of India has now directed that those who want to deposit old Rs.500 and Rs.1000 notes at its offices should carry a stamped document from the airport to prove that they were overseas. However, if the RBI decides to shift its printing more towards smaller denomination notes, this number could be close to 80 per cent, the report assessed.

The same limit will apply to resident Indians who were overseas between November 8 and December 30, but they will have to turn in the old notes by March 31 at designated RBI offices.

"Either way, we maintain, contrary to market perception, that things will be closer to normal by February-end as opposed to predictions of the crisis lasting longer".

"We would like to clarify that the periodical SBN (specified bank notes) figures released by us were based on aggregation of accounting entries done at the large number of currency chests all over the country", RBI said in a press release on Thursday. "If this is the case, the possibility of a GDP bounce-back faster than anticipated may not be ruled out".

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However, as the release said, this facility is subject to the Foreign Exchange Management (Export & Import of Currency) Regulations, 2015.

Referring to various "estimates", the RBI said, "any estimate may not indicate the actual numbers".

Indians who were overseas during November 9 to December 30 have been given a three-month grace period till March 31 to deposit the junked notes, while for the NRIs, it is six months till June 30.

Although the notes were demonetised on November 8, 2016 the Specified Bank Notes (Cessation of Liabilities Ordinance) Ordinance, 2016 provides an opportunity to those persons who were unable to deposit the SBNs within the time provided.

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The Centre had put the value of withdrawn banknotes at ₹15.4 lakh crore.

An affidavit filed by the government in the Supreme Court pegged the proportion of withdrawn notes at 86% or Rs 15.25 lakh crore out of a total Rs 17.74 lakh crore.

The RBI had reported that as of December 10, withdrawn banknotes amounting to ₹12.44 lakh crore had been returned to the RBI and currency chests.

However, both the government and the RBI are yet to come out with the official statement on the exact amount of old notes being deposited so far.

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