November 8, 2016. The day Prime Minister Narendra Modi chose to announce the demonetisation of high-value notes from the Indian economy in a surprising nationwide televised address. “To break the grip of corruption and black money, we have decided that the 500 rupee and 1,000 rupee currency notes presently in use will no longer be legal tender from midnight tonight, that is 8th November 2016.”
“This step will strengthen the hands of the common man in the fight against corruption, black money and fake currency,” the Prime Minister said a year ago.
365 days since demonetisation, this is what the numbers say:
15.44 lakh crore banned
The ban on Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 resulted in the invalidation of 86% of the total currency in the economy, worth 15.44 lakh crore.
Of the 15.44 lakh crore, nearly 99% came back to the Indian banking system as against the claim made by the Prime Minister in his demonetisation speech. “The 500 and 1,000 rupee notes hoarded by anti-national and anti-social elements will become just worthless pieces of paper,” the Prime Minister had said.
Although Minister of State for Finance Arjun Ram Meghwal had said in a written reply in the Lok Sabha that the government did not receive any “official report” on deaths during the course of currency exchange and withdrawals, media reports showed more than 100 people died directly or indirectly due to demonetisation.
15 lakh jobs lost
According to the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy more than 15 lakh jobs were lost in between January and April 2017 due to demonetisation.
15.2% more tax
The government has collected Rs 4.39 lakh crore in direct taxes, up 15.2% year-on-year, during the first seven months of the current fiscal. Until June 30, 2017, for the financial year 2016-17, the government data showed, 1.26 crore new taxpayers, including return filers and non-filers making tax payments, were added to the tax base of the country.
10.7 lakh crore worth cashless transactions
According to RBI data, the total amount of cashless transactions stood at Rs 10.7 lakh crore in the month of August, down from Rs 13.3 lakh crore worth of transactions in March. Albeit, slightly more than pre-demonetisation era.
1,152 I-T searches
Post demonetisation till August, the Income Tax department conducted 1,1152 searches which were up 158% from 447 searches earlier.
13,920 crore undisclosed income
Of the 15.44 lakh crore banned notes, Rs 13,920 crore income was detected as undisclosed income.
3.09 lakh disqualified
3.09 lakh directors associated with shell companies have been disqualified.
The government deregistered 35,000 companies which had made cash deposits worth over Rs 17,000 crore post demonetisation and later withdrawn it.
2.24 lakh struck off
The government struck off 2.24 lakh companies from official records that had been inactive for longer than two years.
100% increase in printing cost
The cost of printing notes doubled to Rs 7,965 crore in the financial year 2016-2017 from Rs 3,421 crore in the financial year 2015-2016 on account of printing of new currencies post note-ban.
0.0002% fake currency
“Enemies from across the border run their operations using fake currency notes,” Narendra Modi had said. But it turned out only Rs 43 crore, 0.0002% of the total demonetised currency was detected as fake.
17,426 crore paid by RBI
The Reserve Bank of India paid Rs 17,426 crore to the government as liquidity in the banking system increased due to demonetisation.
74% big notes
The RBI data showed that demonetisation, whose in-principle aim was to flush out big currency notes, withdrew 86% of old high-denomination notes and infused 74% of new high denomination notes.
The only number that is not available is that how much black money was recovered from the demonetisation exercise. In September, the RBI said it had “no information” on how much black money was recovered or destroyed due to demonetisation. The government, however, claims that due to more cashless transactions, there would be lesser tax evasion, which will help curb black money in the country.