A miniscule .001 percent of the 49.9 billion banknotes circulating in the country are counterfeits, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee said on Tuesday.
"There are 48.9 billion pieces of banknotes circulating in the country. The RBI (Reserve Bank of India) estimates that .001 percent of these are fake," Mukherjee said in the Rajya Sabha during question hour.
At the same time, he also admitted that there were no "quantified or authentic figures. If we know about it (the circulation of fake currency), it will be immediately seized".
"The matter is of concern but we need not press the panic button," Mukherjee maintained. "I am not alarmist. No finance minister can afford to be alarmist."
Responding to reports of more and more cases of fake currency being detected, the minister said:
"There are two types of activities. One is for raking in profits. It is more dangerous when attempts are made to destabilise the economy. Keeping both aspects in view, we are, from time to time, making revisions in our security procedures)."