Fake currency takes election cover to enter India

25 April 2014

A major part of the counterfeit rupee notes in circulation in India enter the country during election time as it is seen as the most opportune time for dealing in counterfeit currency.

Intelligence agencies have reported a more than 25-per cent increase in the inflow of fake Indian currency notes, especially of the high-denomination ones, during general elections.

Intelligence agencies and revenue department sleuths have detected inflows of fake currency from across six foreign locations pumping fake currencies, mostly printed in Pakistan, to India during the on-going Lok Sabha elections.

Most fake notes enter the country from countries like Nepal, Bangladesh, Dubai, Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok, Colombo and lately China, which has now emerged a major transit point for fake Indian currency.

Huge amounts of high-denomination fake currencies were detected over the last few weeks in Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.

Intelligence agencies are at present carrying out a joint operation to trace the movement of cash from neighbouring countries following the seizure of fake currency during the elections.

Obviously, the operators are taking advantage of the busy nine-phase Lok Sabha elections and assembly polls in three states, including Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Arunachal Pradesh.

The Election Commission had, earlier, seized cash worth Rs240 crore from various parts of the country. Andhra Pradesh topped the list with a whopping Rs102 crore, followed by Tamil Nadu (Rs39 crore) and Karnataka (Rs20.53 crore).

In a recent report submitted to finance minister P Chidambaram the department of revenue intelligence has pointed to 'possible surge in influx of counterfeit currency during elections'.

The report put together by the Intelligence Bureau (IB), Research and Analysis Wing (RAW), Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in June last year has pointed to huge influx of fake currency.

According to the report, at least four out of every 1,000 currency notes in circulation in India is counterfeit, which could be of a value of Rs3,200 crore, according to finance ministry and PMO estimates.

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