Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday said that the Rs 2,000 are here to stay. The FM said that the banks have not been given any orders to recalibrate their ATMs or to gradually phase out the high denominations notes.
"The banks have not been given any such instructions as far as Rs 2,000 currency notes are concerned," the Finance Minister said to a question raised about certain reports saying that ATMs are being rebooted to accommodate more Rs 500 denomination notes and Rs 2,0000 notes are going to be phased out.
The FM said this while in Guwahati, where was holding a multitude of meetings with economists, industry leaders on the budget she presented on February 1.
There were reports that Rs 2,000 notes will be taken out of circulation sooner or later. Rs 2,000 notes were introduced after demonetisation was announced back in November 2016. Rs 2,000 notes became the highest denomination in the country.
Sitharaman had told the Parliament that over 43% of the unaccounted cash seized in 2019 was in the form of Rs 2,000 notes.
Close to the third anniversary of demonetisation, former finance secretary Subhash Garg had put forward a case for the demonetisation of Rs 2,000 notes, which he said could be done without much disruption to circulation of cash in the country.
Garg believed that the majority of Rs 2,000 notes were not in circulation since they were being hoarded.