So where’d the design code leak? At any of the high-security Reserve Bank of India printing presses or from the international vendors supplying India the ingredients.
“It is to be probed at what level and how the design got compromised,” CBI director Ashwani Kumar said. He won’t say more.
“The biggest problem is that since most ingredients come from foreign countries,” he said, “there is a greater chance of the technology .”
The papgetting compromiseder — watermarked — comes from Italy, ink from Scotland and Sweden, aluminum for the silvery bar from Switzerland. The purchases are covered by exclusivity code, especially for the paper. The vendors — international private players — are probably free to sell ink and metal.
From the, the forgers pick up ingredients fitting the specifications for Indian notes, said a senior CBI investigator refusing to be named. And then, they make their way into India.
“There is evidence counterfeit notes arrive in bulk from Pakistan and Dubai to launching-points across Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Singapore,” said an Intelligence Bureau officer.
The couriers are usually Indians working abroad.
“The counterfeit syndicate’s handlers offer around Rs 300 for fake notes worth Rs 1,000 that they carry,” the officer said.