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Homechevron_rightIndiachevron_rightDelhi HC dismisses PIL...

Delhi HC dismisses PIL against RBI, SBI allowing Rs 2K note exchange without ID proof

Delhi HC dismisses PIL against RBI, SBI allowing Rs 2K note exchange without ID proof

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Monday dismissed a plea challenging the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and State Bank of India (SBI) notifications, that permits exchange of notes without obtaining any requisition slip and identity proof.

A division bench of Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad dismissed the petition after having reserved its judgement on May 23.

The counsel for RBI Senior Advocate Parag P. Tripathi had last week objected to the Public Interest Litigation (PIL) saying that it must be dismissed with exemplary costs. Tripathi had further said that this is a statutory exercise and not demonetisation.

"None of the points raised by my learned friend in any manner impinges upon the public issues," he added.

The PIL was filed by BJP leader and Advocate Ashwini Upadhyay who sought direction to the RBI and SBI to ensure that Rs 2, 000 banknotes are deposited only in respective bank accounts so that no one could deposit the money in others' bank accounts and people having black money and disproportionate assets could be identified easily.

The petition highlighted that cash transaction in high value currency is the main source of corruption and is used for illegal activities like terrorism, naxalism, separatism, radicalism, gambling, smuggling, money laundering, kidnapping, extortion, bribing and dowry, etc. and the RBI and SBI should ensure that ₹2000 banknotes are deposited only in respective bank accounts.

The PIL also said that a large amount of the currency has reached either in individual's locker or has “been hoarded by the separatists, terrorists, Maoists, drug smugglers, mining mafias & corrupt people".

The petition further stated that the notifications published on May 19 and 20 were arbitrary, and irrational and offends Article 14 of the Constitution of India, hence, inoperative.

"Recently, it was announced by the Centre that every family has an Aadhaar Card and a Bank Account. Therefore, why RBI is permitting to exchange Rs 2000 banknotes without obtaining identity proof. It is also necessary to state that 80 crore BPL families receive free grains. It means 80 crore Indians rarely use Rs 2,000 banknotes. Therefore, the petitioner also seeks direction to RBI and SBI to take steps to ensure that Rs 2000 banknotes are deposited in bank account only," the plea states.

SBI in its guidelines issued directions to all its branches and said that no form or identity proof should be asked for from customers to exchange ₹2,000 currency notes, even as it underlined the one-time limit of ₹20,000 for depositing or exchanging the banknote.

Other banks, including private sector banks and other public sector banks, could ask customers of other banks to submit identification proof.

The RBI’s notification stated that people have been given time from May 23 to September 30 to exchange or deposit ₹2,000 notes so that these can be withdrawn from circulation.

These notes will continue to be legal tender even after the September 30 deadline, and can be used for transactions, the central bank had clarified.

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TAGS:2000 note withdrawalDelhi High CourtAshwini Upadhyay
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