Malda, which is Bengal’s hub for smuggling of fake Indian currency notes from Bangladesh, has seen a record inflow in the month of December 2014 with Rs. 60 lakh of counterfeit notes coming into the district. According to a cautionary note forwarded by the Union ministry of home affairs to the West Bengal home department, the figure is an unprecedented amount as the total amount of fake notes from all districts hardly crossed the Rs. 60 lakh mark a month.
According to Reserve Bank records, 521,155 counterfeit notes with face value of Rs. 2.16 crore were seized in 2011-12.
On the basis of data obtained from different central and state agencies, RBI has found that over 80% of these notes came in through Bengal’s Malda, Murshidabad and Nadia districts. Sources told HT that the Rs. 60 lakh figure has been reached by adding two components. The first is the sum total of the counterfeit currencies seized in the district from time to time by different central and state security agencies during December 2014. “Fake notes seized by agencies during December 2014, add up to around Rs. 15 lakh,” said an official.
The amount of Rs. 45 lakh seized at the border was added to the Rs. 15 lakh. This Rs. 45 lakh is the amount that the smugglers carried past the points of vigilance. Smugglers hand over the money to the next in the chain for distribution to different parts of the country. “The security agencies got information about such high value of unrecovered counterfeit currencies by interrogating carriers who circulates notes in cities such as Mumbai, Lucknow, Kanpur, Jaipur, Surat and cities in Assam, among others.