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US counting votes, India counting notes

As Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced ban on 500 and 1000 rupees note, people could be seen in queque in front of petrol pumps and each and every ATM which was giving Rs 100 notes.

Queque of people in front of an ATM in Noida

Queque of people in front of an ATM in Noida

In his emergency speech, Narendra Modi announced to discontinue both the currency notes from midnight onwards. This decision has been taken to eradicate practice of black money, and forged currency.

Modi said “the notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 will not be legal tender from midnight tonight and these will be just worthless piece of paper.”
Modi said people holding notes of Rs. 500 and Rs. 1000 can deposit the same in their bank and post office accounts from November 10 till December 30.

A look at the new Rs. 500, Rs. 2000 notes specimen. Photo: www.rbi.org

A look at the new Rs. 2000 note specimen. Photo: www.rbi.org

what-you-can-do-note-ban

india-fightThe move, in lined with the government’s intention to curb black money will also boost the digital/cashless currency in India.  Here are the comments of IT Leaders on this surprise step of Indian Government.

“It is like a surgical strike on black money,” Revenue Secretary Hasmukh Adhia.

V Balakrishnan, former CFO of Infosys: “It is a good initiative to reduce black money. But we need to see implementation has to be seen because the transition can be painful. However, the first thing they should do to remove all the black money is to have political parties receive donations only in cheque. Today, 75-80% of political donations happens by cash. That is the starting point for black money. I think if they had done that too. It would have brought a lot of credibility to the whole process.”

Arundhati Bhattacharya, State Bank of India chairperson: “We will strive to restock ATMs at the earliest and make them operational. The Government has given enough exemptions to ensure urgent needs are met. We will work round the clock to ensure that customers have a smooth experience.” She said the banking system has handled such demonetisation in the past as well and will do so again this time.

Chanda Kochhar, ICICI Bank chief, “It’s perhaps the most significant move ever taken to curtail the parallel economy. It will give a sharp boost to all formal channels of payments which in turn will help the formal economy to grow at a faster clip in the long term.”

Deepak Parekh, HDFC chairman: “It is a big reform which no one expected and will have a huge impact on people who are hoarding money and not disclosing money for tax purposes.” He said the realty sector, which depends a lot on cash transactions, may be impacted and construction activity can also slow down, but underlined that it is a pain worth taking in the short term for long term gains.

D K Pant, India Ratings chief economist: This measure, coming after the Income Disclosure Scheme — which closed on September 30 — is targeted at curbing black money.
“There may be some inconvenience to general consumers in short-run, however, this inconvenience is worth for long-term gain.”

Vijay Shekhar Sharma, PayTM founder: It is the “best move” which will boost digital payments.

Naveen Surya, Payments Council of India chairman: He described the move as extremely bold and much needed step “to cure us from disease of cash in our society”.

C J George, managing director of Geojit BNP Paribas: This is the creation of Swachh Bharat in one stroke of a pen.

“It is a bold and decisive step towards a cashless economy.”

-MP Ahammed, chairman of Malabar Gold

“Biggest gamble by Mr . Modi , banning Rs 500 n Rs 1000 notes. What happens to Bharat with 46% unbanked population? Is #rbi geared for this, will it derail manufacturing recovery which is in early stage? Is #indianbanking prepared? Will #namo bite the dust this time?”

-Satyam Kumar , Co-founder, Loantap

Sathvik Vishwanath, CEO and Co-Founder, Unocoin, “The intentions are good but very difficult to achieve. If going cashless is the only way forward, certainly the bitcoin which is borderless trustless and transparent currency makes more sense”.

Manavjeet Singh, CEO & Founder, Rubique, “This is a promising move made by the  government towards cashless economy.  This will boost innovation in the nascent electronic payment industry. Without doubt, this will bring down frauds and thefts and costs of printing cash. A great blow to black money. If executed well, the costs of doing transactions between buyers and sellers will lower significantly by 2019.”

Ranjit Punja, CEO &Co-founder, Creditmantri, “Sweeping step taken by the PM, but this should have a positive impact in curtailing black money and reducing corruption. Likely to cause some temporary hardship, and with the introduction of the Rs. 2,000 note, along with the security and tracking features, currency will be used as intended.”

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