Demonetisation: Check out govt's 7-point strategy to contain currency crisis

Women wait for ATM counters to open in Jammu
When Prime Minister Narendra Modi on November 8 said that Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 currency notes would cease to be legal tender within a few hours of the announcement being made, the demonetisation move was lauded by some as a major assault on the flow of black money, fake currency and corruption. Even as most people rushed to get their existing currency notes exchanged, few could foretell the extent of cash crunch that would befall the common man in the days to come.

However, ever since banks and automated teller machines (ATMs) resumed exchange of old notes and withdrawal of new currency, the queues for these seem to only be growing. While some continue to laud the government for its initiative to cleanse the economy for the long-term good, many Indians have been facing immediate hardships for want of usable cash in hand. 

There also have been reports of some people resorting to illegal means to exchange their cash and some others profiteering through assisting them for monetary benefits.

In view of these issues and to address the present crisis, the government on Tuesday evening came up with a number of steps. Shaktikanta Das, secretary in the department of economic affairs, Ministry of Finance, briefed the media earlier in the day. He tried to build confidence among people by saying that the situation was improving gradually and would ease further in the coming days. Das also listed seven steps that the government was taking.

Here are the seven steps that the Centre is planning to take to check illegal activities and to improve the situation for people:

Indelible ink
Some people had been exchanging the demonetised currency notes multiple times, even as others were not able to do so even once. The government is planning to use indelible ink marks, which will be applied at cash counters to avoid same people exchanging money multiple times.

Turning to god
The government is also encouraging religious institutions to deposit currency notes of smaller denominations in local banks, so that the banks are flush with enough cash in these denominations to dispense to people.

Jan Dhan accounts
Many accounts of people from the weaker sections of society that were opened under the government’s ambitious Jan Dhan Yojana were being used by the moneyed to deposit unaccounted cash in smaller instalments. The government is now keeping a close watch on deposits in these accounts.

No misuse of bank accounts
The government has also appealed to the holders of Jan Dhan accounts not to let their accounts be misused by others to deposit their black money.

Task force
A special task force has been set up to monitor the infusion of fake currency notes and deposit of black money into the system.

Ensuring supply of provisions
Recently, there were reports of a sudden spurt in the prices of some essential commodities, mainly due to rumour-mongering about a scarcity. Now, the government is going to closely monitor the supply of essential commodities in the economy.

Crackdown on social-media rumours
The government has also appealed to people not to believe in or spread rumours being peddled through various social media platforms that certain institutions are going on strike. 

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