Nearly 2 years after demonetisation, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on Wednesday, in its 2017-18 annual report said that 99.3 percent of banned notes were returned in the banking system. The report also states the amount returned to be worth Rs 15.3 lakh crore against the Rs 15.4 lakh crore that was in circulation on November 8, 2018.
Now, that the statistics have been revealed the entire argument of Modi government that the exercise curbed black money that has been in circulation falls flat.
“SBNs (specified banknotes) were received by the Reserve Bank either directly or from bank branches/ post offices through the currency chest mechanism. Verification and process in of the SBNs has been completed. The total value of SBNs in circulation as on November 08, 2016, post verification and reconciliation, was Rs 15,417.93 billion. The total value of SBNs returned from circulation is Rs 15,310.73 billion” the RBI report said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in a televised address, had announced the scrapping of Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 notes on 8 November 2016, touting it as an attack on black money, corruption and terror funding.
After demonetisation was announced, the opposition had criticised the decision claiming that it will affect the economy. The NDA government, despite undergoing a baptism of fire had stuck to its guns and justified demonetisation.
The RBI, in its previous annual report released, in August 2017 had stated that Rs 15.28 lakh crore, or 99 per cent of the demonetised currencies totally worth Rs 15.44 lakh crore, had returned to the banks by 30 June 2017.
However, the central bank had called the figures to be provisional as the specified bank notes were still being verified for authenticity and numerical accuracy. At that time the demonised notes from Nepal and Bhutan were also yet to be counted.
Apart from the currency figures RBI Annual Report for the year, 2017-18 stated that in the evolution of monetary aggregates, currency in circulation surpassed its pre-demonetisation level while credit growth revived to double digits from a historic low in the previous year.
RBI Annual Report 2017-18 also states, “Domestic financial markets were broadly stable, with rallies in equity markets&intermittent corrections, hardening bond yields, the rupee trading with a generally appreciating bias except towards close of the yr&le liquidity in money markets”