The Reserve Bank is phasing out old currency notes in the denomination of Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 of 1996 series and replacing them with new ones with added security features.
RBI spokesperson Alpana Killawala from Mumbai told PTI that the public will not be put to inconvenience by the phasing out of these notes, which merely means that these currency notes would not be reissued after they are deposited with banks.
These notes will be replaced with 2006, Mahatma Gandhi series notes, which have more security features, she said.
Initially, only Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 are being phased out, which may be extended to other currency notes of old series as well.
When asked whether these notes are being phased out because of the problem of counterfeiting, she said replacement of old currency notes with new ones is an exercise followed by central banks all over the world.
The spokesperson made it clear that these notes are not being withdrawn, as is being speculated in some circles. Withdrawal of notes basically means that a currency note will no longer be a legal tender after a stipulated date.
She said no target date has been put for phasing out of these notes, as it all depends on when they are deposited with banks.
As such, notes which are not deposited with banks will continue to be legal tenders in the hands of the public.