RBI expected to collect Rs15,00,000 cr in junked currency

An estimated Rs15,00,000 crore in junked Rs500 and Rs1,000 notes – or about 97.4 per cent of the Rs15,40,000 crore in circulation - have flown back to the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), following the 50-day (9 November to 30 December) demonetisation drive.

While various estimates give different figures on the amount of demonetized notes that banks have so far collected, finance minister Arun Jaitley also declined to do a guess work. "I don't know the number," he said when asked about the figures.

Both the government and the RBI are yet to come out with official statements on the total deposits collected by banks across the country as of end-December 2016, the last date for depositing and exchange of junked Rs500 and Rs1,000 notes.

Reports quoting banking sources said between Rs14,50,000 crore and Rs15,00,000 crore of these junked notes have come back into the banking system although actual figures are yet to be announced.

RBI is still doing reconciliation and cross-checking of accounts presented by various banks and final figure on the amount of deposits received during the demonetisation period will be announced in the next few days, they say.

As of 10 December 2016, RBI and the currency chest received a total of Rs12,44,000 crore in old notes of Rs500 and Rs1,000 denomination as per the last official number.

RBI is expected to  have now received complete details of all such deposits till the last day of demonetisation. RBI had asked all banks, including cooperatives, to report details of deposits of old Rs500 and Rs1,000 notes to it after the close of banking hours.

While there could be a minor addition to the current total in the deposits of junked notes as extended exchange facility is available to certain specified category, finance ministry also said there were lot of areas where double counting could have happened.