RBI to phase out currency notes issued prior to 2005 from 31 March

The Reserve Bank of India today announced plans to withdraw from circulation all currency notes issued prior to 2005, after 31 March 2014, after which, these notes can be exchanged by banks.

From 1 April 2014, the public will be required to approach banks for exchanging these notes, RBI said.

Banks will continue to provide exchange facility for these notes until further communication, it added.

The central bank further stated that the public can easily identify the notes to be withdrawn as the notes issued before 2005 do not carry the year of their printing on the reverse side.

However, RBI has clarified that the notes issued before 2005 will continue to be legal tender and banks are required to exchange the notes for their customers as well as for non-customers.

From 1 July 2014, however, to exchange more than 10 pieces of Rs500 and Rs1000 notes, non-customers will have to furnish proof of identity and residence to the bank branch in which she/he wants to exchange the notes.

The Reserve Bank has appealed to the public not to panic. They are requested to actively co-operate in the withdrawal process.