Reserve Bank of India has issued directions to the banks to phase out the banknotes issued prior to 2005 and many banks have directed its business units to stop reissuing the pre-2005 currency notes. The bank been advised to accept the old notes from the public and do it in a smooth manner and without causing any inconvenience to the public. Older series of banknotes issued prior to 2005 will be acceptable for all kinds of monetary transactions till March 31, 2014. Thereafter, the public will be required to approach bank branches which would provide them exchange facilities on an ongoing basis.
All currency notes printed post 2005 have year of printing clearly printed in the middle of the bottom row on the backside of the note. If your bank note has no year of printing on the back, it means the note is printed before 2005 and needs to be exchanged with the bank as per the RBI deadline. The proposal of Reserve Bank of India to withdraw all currency notes issued before 2005, is believed to be aimed at removing fake or counterfeit currency embedded into the financial system as well help uncover black money in the country. Currently the Reserve Bank of India prints currency notes in the denomination of Rs. 5, Rs. 10, Rs. 20, Rs. 50, Rs. 100, Rs. 500 and Rs. 1,000. Notes printed before the year 2005 do not have the year of printing marked on it. All notes with the year of printing indicated on the currency note would stay in operation as all of them are posted after 2005.
There is no reason to panic whatsoever as the RBI has clearly stated that all old notes would continue to be completely legal and can be exchanged at any bank after April 1, 2014. All public sector as well as private banks have been asked to create a dedicated exchange counter where both account owners as well as non account owners of that bank or branch can exchange their old currency notes for new ones. These exchange counters will become operation from 1st April 2014. Any exchange of more than ten pieces of old Rs 500 or Rs 1000 notes after 30th June 2014 would require identity proof and address to be shared with the bank, if you are a non customer of that bank.
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