Arun Jaitley: Big population is a cause of larger queues

Arun Jaitely-HTLS

New Delhi, December 2: While defending government’s demonetisation drive, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Friday said that big population is a cause of larger queues and situation would improve as the circulation of Rs 500 and Rs 2000 notes would increase by December 30.

Jaitley was speaking at inaugural address of Hindustan Times Leadership Summit.

The finance Minster said by the end of December release of new 500 and 2,000 rupee notes will improve the situation but the number of new banknotes in circulation would not be same as before November 8.

“Obviously, one of the advantages of this exercise is going to be that you won’t have the same level of paper currency which existed,” Jaitley said at HTLS.

He said that India is a huge country and large population is bound to have large queues at ATMs and Banks. He however said that queues are disciplined as India has by and large accepted demonetisation as a battle against corruption.

He said government’s eyes cashless economy and it is a real challenge as most of the Indians live and work in the informal economy.

On November 8, Prime Minister Narendra Modi all of sudden announced that Rs 500 and Rs 1000 currency notes cease to be legal notice and stashed away 86 % of currency in circulation and haulted the pace of Indian economy. Since the note ban huge currency crunch has been affecting the common people as government has also restricted the flow of new currency.

On the stagnation of economy due to cash swamp, Jaitely said: It does create a disruption…But I don’t see the disruption lasting for very long. You may see some impact for a quarter or so.

On reports regarding delay of GST, Jaitley said: If on September 16, 2017, there’s no GST, then there’s no taxation. So our intention is to make sure it gets implemented from April 1, 2017.

Wefornews Bureau

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