New Delhi: Old 500 rupee notes will not be accepted anywhere from Friday, the government has said. The notes can be deposited in banks till December 30. All exemptions announced to ease the cash crunch for citizens after the notes ban was announced last month will end at midnight on Thursday.
The sudden ban on Rs. 500 and Rs. 1,000 notes on November 8 led to a massive rush for cash, with people waiting for hours to exchange or deposit banned notes at banks and ATMs.
The government allowed people to use the old Rs. 500 notes at hospitals, medicine shops and for water and electricity bills.
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has said that banks have received Rs. 12.44 lakh crore or $184.24 billion in old 500 and 1,000-rupee notes till December 10. It also said that banks have so far issued 4.61 lakh crores in new currency to people over the counter and through ATMs.
While announcing the notes ban, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said it was aimed at bringing back unaccounted money into the system, check fake currency and deter terror financing. It wiped out 86 per cent of the money in circulation.