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RBI using 'sophisticated' machines to count scrapped notes

11 September 2017

Ten-months after the demonetisation of high-denomination currency, the Reserve Bank of India has said it is using sophisticated Currency Verification and Processing (CVPS) machines for checking the accuracy or the demonetised Rs500 and Rs1,000 currency notes, contrary to reports on the issue.

Quoting a Right to Information (RTI) reply, PTI had reported that the RBI was not using machines for counting Specified Bank Notes (SBNs).

However, the central bank in a late Sunday evening press release clarified that the "RBI actually uses sophisticated Currency Verification & Processing (CVPS) machines for checking the numerical accuracy and genuineness of the currency notes, including SBNs scrapped on November 8. These machines are way superior to note counting machines."

According to the PTI report, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) had said in an RTI reply that counting machines are "not being used" for tallying the demonetised notes in any of its offices.

According to the PTI report, the central bank also said in its RTI reply that no counting machines were taken on lease to reconcile the total figure of the junked notes.

The RBI had according to the earlier reply also refused information regarding the number of personnel assigned for the task of tallying the notes. "Compiling the information would disproportionately divert the resources, the information sought cannot be furnished as per Section 7 (9) of RTI Act, 2005," the RBI said in its reply to the RTI query, according to PTI's correspondent.

However, RBI in its latest statement said, ''With a view to augmenting processing capacity, RBI is using the available machines in two shifts and has been using some machines temporarily drawn from commercial banks after suitable modifications.'' The apex bank added that it is exploring other options to augment the processing capacity.

In its annual report for 2016-17 released on 30 August, the RBI had said Rs15.28 lakh crore, or 99 per cent of the demonetised 500 and 1,000 rupee notes, had returned to the banking system (See: RBI says 99% of scrapped notes have returned into system).

It said that only Rs16,050 crore out of the Rs15.44 lakh crore in the old high denomination notes have not returned.

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