November 8, 2016, the date will be written in golden words in Indian history. The day when the country went crazy as our Prime Minister announced that the currency of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 ceased to be a legal tender post midnight.
Since the announcement, banks and ATMs have seen massive queue of the people. But think of those poor creatures that were sitting on loads of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes without proper declaration and had sleepless nights thinking about ideas to stash those currencies. And thus began the cash and gold stash saga. From hiding the cash in baby’s diaper to hiding it in bathroom tiles, several attempts were made. But some unfortunates were caught and made headlines.
The demonetisation phase saw a lot of IT raids, cash crunch and cash stash.
- On November 17, during a nakabandi the Niphad Police seized about Rs 32,99,500 in a car which was travelling from Nashik to Kopargaon. Another such incident took place at Aurangabad district where the police seized about Rs 40 lakh in a car moving from Gujarat to Vaijapur.
- On November 12, about 19 currency notes of Rs 1,000 were found floating in the Ganga river at Nayaghat. The police were informed about the incident after the fishermen got into a fight for the money.
- We are yet to unveil “katappa ne bahubali kyu mara?”, but the Bahubali producers –Shobhu Yarlagadda and Prasad Devineni – made headlines for another issue. The producers came under IT department’s scanner after cash worth Rs 60 crore in demonetised notes were found at their residence.
- The big fat 500-crore wedding of former Karnataka Minister Janardhan Reddy’s daughter caught everyone’s eye when IT officials turned up at the wedding with a questionnaire on the expenses incurred. To add to the trouble, Reddy’s driver Ramesh Gowda committed suicide and in a note allegedly blamed Reddy for mentally harassing him and also mentioned about the minister’s illegal laundering of Rs 100 crore, post demonetisation.
- The Delhi Police crime branch and IT Department conducted a raid at NGO Routes to Roots in Hauz Khas. The raid exposed how black money was used to tie up deals with Pakistani actors and artists.
- On December 12, a customs team seized 16 kg gold bars from a family of six at Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi. The gold bars were hidden in the diapers of the infants accompanying them. Their suspicious behaviour alerted the customs sleuths at the airport.
- Responding to a tip-off that the Dumka Head Post Office had exchanged Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes with the new ones, the Jharkhand Police conducted a raid at the post office and seized a cash of Rs 93 lakh.
- In a similar incident, the CBI officials in Hyderabad conducted raids at eight different locations and seized about Rs 40 lakh in cash in demonetised currency.
- Rs 5.7 crore in new notes, Rs 90 lakh in old currency notes and 32 kg gold biscuits and jewellery were found stashed inside the bathroom tiles of a Hawala dealer in Karnataka.
- A businessman in New Delhi was duped for Rs 2 crore on the pretext of getting the old notes exchanged for new ones.