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A year after demonetisation, seizures of fake currency notes see sharp dip

Interestingly, what is described as equally significant by officials is that none of the fake currency notes caught post-demonetisation were of high quality

BS Web Team  |  New Delhi 

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A year after demonetisation, the recovery and seizures of (FICN) have witnessed a sharp drop from the earlier levels recorded in 2016 and 2015. The face value of counterfeit Indian currency seized across the country between November 2016, when was announced, and November 6, 2017, totalled Rs 16 crore, less than one-third of the Rs 51.3 crore seized in 2016. The RBI put the figures of in FY17 at Rs 43.47 crore in its annual report released on August 30.

This amount includes all denominations. ALSO READ: Is Modi winning fake currency war? A data you shouldn't miss During 2015-16, 6.32 lakh pieces of fake currency notes had been detected, said in its annual report for 2016-17. An analysis of the data released by the RBI on the detection rate of of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 denomination scrapped notes in a nationwide sample survey, also published in the annual report, suggests it was Rs 18.97 crore between November 8, 2016 and March 31, 2017. Interestingly, what is described as equally significant by officials is that none of the fake currency notes caught post-were of high quality. "In fact, they were found during physical and forensic examination to be mere photocopies or computer scans of real currency notes", said the official to TOI. The common features that run through FICN recovered or seized between and now are its poor print quality, absence of micro-lettering, use of thick paper, poorly attempted water-marks, no optical variable ink and colour shift effect in denomination numerals and security thread, absence of intaglio or raised effect and uneven windowed effect in security thread. Moreover, a home ministry official said the dip in FICN seizures is a positive development in efforts to counter terror financing. According to TOI reports, the official claimed, "A good part of terror funds were pumped in by Pakistan in form of high-value FICN printed by ISI backed syndicates. However, they are yet to replicate security features of the new notes." According to TOI report, the data on domestic FICN recoveries and seizures since 2015 as well as specifically for the year following demonetisation, the face value of recoveries between November 2016 and November 6, 2017 was down to just Rs 2.1 crore as compared with Rs 36.15 crore in 2016 and Rs 28.72 crore in 2015. However, the face value of FICN seizures by law enforcement agencies was only slightly lower at Rs 13.92 crore between November 2016 and now, as against Rs 15.15 crore in 2016 and Rs 15.48 crore in 2015. Monthly break-up of FICN recoveries and seizures between November 2016 and November 2017 (till 6th) shows the face value of seizures peaked in March 2017 (Rs 5.2 crore) and April 2017 (Rs 3.2 crore).

First Published: Tue, November 07 2017. 16:13 IST