No plan to junk Rs 2000 banknotes: Junior FM

Indore: Putting to rest speculations over a possible ban of Rs 2,000 banknotes, junior finance minister Shiv Pratap Shukla today said government is not considering any such proposal.

“No proposal is under our consideration to ban the Rs 2,000 banknotes,” Minister of State for Finance Shiv Pratap Shukla told reporters.

“Right now, no proposal is under our consideration to ban the Rs 2,000 banknotes,” Shukla told reporters here.

He said the Rs 500 bills are circulated in adequate numbers in the wake of the currency crunch in many states in the past few months. Right now, there is no cash shortage at the ATMs, he added.

Speculation about a possible discontinuation of the highest value bills became rife after there was a massive currency shortages in many states in the past few months and banks were asked to further recalibrate the currency cassettes in ATMs to accommodate new notes, which further complicated money circulation in the system.

The Rs 2000-notes were introduced after the surprise noteban in November 2016 when government banned the then existing Rs 500 bills along with the Rs 1000-currency notes.

While banning these notes government initially claimed that it was to check black money which many analysts and opposition politicians found illogical saying higher denomination notes only made black money much easier.

On the growing clamour for bringing petroleum products under the goods and services tax regime, he said efforts are on to build a consensus among the states over it.

“We can’t thrust upon the states our will that petroleum products should be brought under GST as different states might have their problems. We are waiting for their consent,” he said.

Denying talks in some quarters that GST has fuelled inflation, he said, “currently, the highest GST of 28 per cent is levied on 40 items only. The rest of the goods have a GST of 18,12 and 5 per cent and that with the new tax regime, many goods have in fact become cheaper.”