Zee Media Bureau
New Delhi: The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has the sole authority to issue banknotes in India. RBI, like other central banks the world over, changes the design of banknotes from time to time.
After, Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently announced that Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 notes would no longer be legal tender, most of us have shifted our focus to currency.
Let's check out 10 steps from preparation of bank notes to their loading at ATM.
Requirement of notes
The Reserve Bank estimates the quantum of banknotes that needs to be printed in the begining of the year, based on the requirement for meeting the demand for banknotes based on various factors like inflation, GDP growth, replacement of soiled banknotes and reserve stock requirements.
Preparing the Paper
Banknotes are high-security papers that are designed, produced and supplied by currency paper mills in Mysuru (Karnataka) and Hoshangabad (Madhya Pradesh). These mills can together produce 18,000 metric tonnes of note paper yearly. Banknote paper can also be imported.
Security Printing and Minting Corporation of India Limited (SPMCIL) is an Indian government-owned corporation that engages in the production of bank notes, coins, non–judicial stamps, postage stamps, and other government related documents for India. The company was formed in 2006 as the result of corporatisation of security presses and mints functioning under the India Ministry of Finance. It contains nine units, four mints, and a paper mill.
Bank notes are embedded with security features –multi-tonal, three-dimensional watermark, micro-lettering and security threads – which are incorporated in Mysuru and Hoshangabad. There is an R&D team that works continuously to review and improve security features.
After the security paper is ready, it is sent to the 4 note printing presses at Mysuru, Salboni (West Bengal), Dewas (Madhya Pradesh) and Nashik (Maharashtra), where additional security features are added. Mysore and Salboni units come under Reserve Bank of India. And Dewas and Nasik units function under security, printing and minting corporation India.
Cutting of notes
Indian express, explains that Notes are printed in sheets before they are being telescopically numbered and cut. There are 100 notes in a packet; 10 packets in a bundle. There are 40 Rs-2,000 notes in each sheet.
To facilitate the distribution of notes and rupee coins, the Reserve Bank has authorised selected branches of banks to establish currency chests. These are actually storehouses where bank notes and rupee coins are stocked on behalf of the Reserve Bank. At present, there are over 4422 currency chests. The currency chest branches are expected to distribute notes and rupee coins to other bank branches in their area of operation.
7 registered cash logistics firms cash logistics companies offer secured cash transportation from the currency chests to bank branches and ATMs across the country. 8,800 vans carry such cash to the ATMs. ATMs have drawers called cassettes which are filled with money. Usually, an ATM holds four cassettes while after the introduction of new Rs 500 and Rs 2,000 notes these cassettes have undergone recaliberation owing to their currency sizes.
To ferry cash to particularly remote areas such as some places in the Northeast and Jammu & Kashmir, helicopters or fixed wing aircraft may be used. Typically, in a remote area, an ATM needs to be loaded only once in 6 days.
White label ATM operators
RBI also allows for non-bank operators to spread of ATMs network in semi-urban and rural areas, where bank-owned ATM penetration has been few and far between.