Exchange of ₹2,000 notes not demonetisation but statutory exercise, RBI tells Delhi HC

Exchange of ₹2,000 notes not demonetisation but statutory exercise, RBI tells Delhi HC

The RBI was defending its move against a plea challenging the exchange of banknotes without asking for ID proof.

FPJ Web DeskUpdated: Tuesday, May 23, 2023, 08:11 PM IST
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Delhi HC reserves order on PIL challenging RBI's without identity proof exchange of Rs 2,000 notes | File

The Delhi High Court on Tuesday reserved the order on a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) against Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and State Bank of India (SBI) notifications, which permits the exchange of Rs 2,000 currency notes without obtaining any requisition slip and identity proof. Appearing for RBI, senior advocate Parag Tripathi opposed the plea and said it is a statutory exercise and not a demonetisation.

The plea called the decision arbitrary and irrational and offends under Article 14 of the Constitution of India.

The bench comprising of Justices Satish Chander Sharma and Subramonium Prasad on Tuesday said, "the court will pass the appropriate order while keeping the order reserved."

The plea had been moved by BJP leader and advocate Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay, further seeking direction to the RBI and SBI to ensure that Rs 2,000 banknotes are deposited in respective bank accounts so that no one could deposit the money in others’ bank accounts and people having black money and disproportionate assets could be identified easily.

During arguments before the Court, petitioner advocate Ashwini Upadhyay clarified that he has not challenged the notification as a whole only as far as it allows the exchange of currency without any proof of identity.

The plea also prayed for a direction to the Centre to take appropriate steps against the black money and disproportionate asset holders in order to weed out corruption, benami transaction and secure the fundamental rights of citizens. The plea further stated that according to the RBI, total value of Rs 2,000 banknotes in circulation has declined from Rs 6.73 lakh crore to 3.62 lakh crore, of which 3.11 lakh crore has been reached either in individual’s locker otherwise has been hoarded by the separatists, terrorists, Maoists, drug smugglers, mining mafias and corrupt people.

Recently, it was announced by the Centre that every family has AADHAAR Card and Bank Account. “Therefore, why RBI is permitted to exchange Rs 2,000 banknotes without obtaining identity proof? Therefore, the petitioner also seeks direction from RBI and SBI to take steps to ensure that Rs 2000 banknotes are deposited in a bank account only, the plea stated.

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