India’s security establishment never had any doubts about Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) producing and pumping fake currency notes into the country. Now they have put a firm number to the extent of the problem.
Last year, the ISI pushed in fake currency notes of the face value of Rs 1,600 crore into the country in an effort to fund its terror activities and destabilise the Indian monetary system.
Sources said an ISI officer, Aslam Chaudhary, was understood to be the main person within the ISI, handling the printing of fake currency notes.
Security agencies estimate that the ISI spent just about Rs 29 to print a Rs 1,000 note as compared to Rs 39 that it costs the India’s federal bank.
Investigators, who have been able to track back the origin of the fake notes, say these are remarkably similar to the genuine notes.
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) has been able to link the fake notes seized in India in the past to Pakistani security presses by comparing the chemicals of genuine Pakistani notes and fake currency seized in India.
It is in recognition of extent of the damage to the monetary stability that the government has decided to amend the anti-terror law, Unlawful Activities Prevention Act, to count production, smuggling or circulation of high quality counterfeit Indian currency as a terrorist offence.
Once enacted, this will mean people convicted of circulating counterfeit currency can be sentenced to life imprisonment. It will also empower investigators to attach properties of the smugglers even before their conviction.