The cat is finally out of the bag and RBI’s disclosure that almost all of banned notes back in banking system barring one per cent means demonetization was a mockery of the government exercise which actually helped people convert their ‘Black’ money into ‘White’. Over hundred lives were lost due to banking stress and economic monetary blow during demonetization period apart from hardships faced by citizens meant the whole exercise was ill planned. The government had to spend over 6k crores to print new currency and another 16 to 18k crores as interest paid to banks to replace old currency meant there were negative gains out of demonetization.
However, good lessons learnt for the future and ‘huge cash deposit’ details could be utilised by the government to trace the source of black money in the future. The government surprised all by banning one thousand rupee notes and replacing them by two thousand which is actually against the principles of demonetization and higher currency notes should be withdrawn from the banking system without committing earlier mistake. Government’s intentions of curbing black money though cannot be questioned even if the method to tackle it failed. Governments will and citizen’s cooperation in coming years should help Indian economy and digitization combined by GST should help achieve that goal.
(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)