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New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Tuesday reserved the order on Public Interest Litigation (PIL) seeking direction to quash the RBI notification dated May 19, 2023, whereby the RBI has taken a decision to withdraw the Rs 2000 denomination banknotes from circulation under the clean note policy or otherwise.
The Division bench of Justice Satish Chander Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad on Tuesday reserved the order in the matter after noting down the submissions of petitioner and repondents. The RBI has opposed the plea stating that Rs 2000 note continues to be legal tender. The same bench on Monday dismissed the plea challenging the Reserve Bank of India (RBI)'s permission for exchanging Rs2000 currency notes without any identity proof following the withdrawal of the highest-value currency notes from circulation.
Plea sought direction to RBI and Union Finance Ministry to issue notification/circular for public at large clarifying the estimated life span of each denomination banknote presently in circulation and also estimated time/year of being withdrawn from circulation in future by RBI under the Clean Note Policy or otherwise.
Petitioner Rajneesh Bhaskar Gupta through plea submitted that the RBI has no independent power under the Reserve Bank of India Act, 1934 to direct the non-issue or the discontinuance of issue of bank notes of any denominational values and the said power is vested only with the Central Government under section 24 (2) of the RBI Act, 1934.
Plea further submitted that neither impugned notification/circular dated May, 19, 2023 of RBI does not speak that Central Government under section 24 (2) of the RBI Act, 1934 has taken decision of withdrawal of denomination of Rs.2000 from circulation nor any such notification has been issued by the Central Government so far regarding withdrawal of denomination of Rs.2000 from circulation.
Plea further submitted that as per the reasoning given by the present RBI Governor, if the estimated life span of denomination of Rs.2000 is about 4-5 years then all other banknotes like Rs.500, Rs.200. Rs.100, Rs.50 Rs.20 Rs.10 Rs.5 etc. printed in the same year of banknote of Rs.2000/- must have same estimated life span and are presumed to be withdrawn under the same Clean Note Policy of RBI at any time without considering the consequences/hardship of the same upon the public at large.
The small vendor/shopkeeper has stopped taking Rs.2000/- banknotes after the RBI Notification/circular of in question and not considering that the legal validity of the said note is remained valid till 30th September 2023 which creates an unprecedented situation for public at large having such notes and only remedy is left to move to bank in his/her official working hours for depositing/exchanging the said Rs.2000/- banknote, stated the petition.
A thousand crores have been spent from the public exchequer i.e. Tax payer money, as a printing cost for printing good quality with better safety measures denomination of Rs.2000 in tune of Rs.6.7 lakhs crore after demonetization in the year 2016, which will be wasted, if such banknotes are withdrawn from the circulation unnecessary without any valid scientific reasons in the interest of the economy of the country, read the plea. (ANI)