The printing of new currency notes of Rs 500 has been put on halt at Nashik and Dewas printing presses. This came weeks after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the demonetization of old currency notes.
Earlier, RBI sources highlighted that the printing of new Rs 500 notes consists of conspicuous errors. Also, the Security Printing and Minting Corporation of India Ltd’s (SPMCIL) Nashik and Dewas presses have low printing capacity. This has enforced the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and the Finance Ministry to shift the printing of new 500 rupee notes to Mysuru press.
The SPMCIL is under Finance Ministry but the Mysuru press in Karnataka and the Salboni press in West Bengal are functioned by Bharatiya Reserve Bank Note Mudran Ltd (BRBNML). BRBNML is operated by the RBI. The rate at which Mysuru and Salboni press prints the new Rs 2000 note are 40 million pieces. Each of the currency printing press prints 20 million pieces of new 2000 rupee currency notes.
A former RBI deputy governor spoke on the rate of printing of the new 500 rupee notes and told The Quint that the rate was “very low at only 5 million pieces per day at Nashik and Dewas, where the machinery was outdated”.
He further said that at the current rate, the printing of new currency note of 500 rupees will take around 10 months. “The Modi government not only acted in haste but consulted very few officials who had no idea or knowledge of the Herculean task before them,” he added.
According to RBI sources, the shift in the operation to print the new currency note of Rs 500 at BRBNML’s Mysuru press will take 21 extra days to process the machinery for it to start printing fresh denominations.
“What we are looking at is a financial catastrophe,” the former RBI deputy governor said, adding, “is a myth that the Prime Minister’s ostensible move to curb black money would be achieved”.