Demonetisation: 'November 8 watershed moment in history of Indian economy', says Arun Jaitley

File photo of Finance Minister Arun Jaitley Photograph:( Reuters )

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Nov 07, 2017, 07.17 AM (IST)

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has called November 8, 2016, the day when the BJP government banned the existing currency notes and replaced them with new ones a “watershed moment in the history of Indian economy”.

In a blog post on the first anniversary of demonetisation, Jaitley said, “November 8, 2016 would be remembered as a watershed moment in the history of Indian economy. This day signifies the resolve of this Government to cure the country from ‘dreaded disease of black money’.”

Highlighting his government’s resolve to cleanse the economy and strengthen its foundations, Jaitley wrote in his blog that the process was started soon after the BJP came to power in 2014. “This Government took decisions and implemented the earlier provisions of law in a well-considered and planned manner over three years to meet the objective of fight against black money.  These decisions span from setting up of SIT to passing of necessary laws for foreign assets to demonetisation and to implementation of GST,” Jaitley said.

The government has made elaborate plans to celebrate the first anniversary of demonetisation and has deployed many Union ministers to highlight government’s fight against black money. The government is celebrating November 8, 2017, as ‘anti-black money day’.

The opposition has hit back at the government saying the entire exercise has been a failure. In his blog post, Jaitley highlights the positive outcome of demonetisation to counter opposition charge. “RBI has reported in their Annual Accounts that Specified Bank Notes (SBNs) of estimated value of Rs.15.28 lakh crore have been deposited back as on 30.6.2017. The outstanding SBNs as on 8th November, 2016 were of Rs.15.44 lakh crore value.  The total currency in circulation of all denominations as on 8th November, 2016 was 17.77 lakh crore. One of the important objective of demonetisation was to make India a less cash economy and thereby reduce the flow of black money in the system.  The reduction in currency in circulation from the base scenario reflects that this intended objective has been met,” the finance minister says in his blog post.