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05 July 2017, 12:36 | Melanie Burgess
Demonetisation SC asks RBI govt to give one more chance to deposit old notes Image of old Rs 500 notes
The Supreme Court has asked the Centre and the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) whether a window can be provided to people who couldn't deposit their old Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes before December 31 past year.
Prime Minister Modi had announced on November 8 that Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes would no longer be a legal tender.
The bench made the appeal while hearing a petition filed by advocate Sudha Mishra and others, who had challenged the Centre's decision to not allow citizens to deposit the scrapped notes beyond December 30, 2016, reported Bar and Bench. "We want to know as to why you chose to bar such persons". The SC bench was comprised of Chief Justice JS Khehar and Justice DY Chandrachud.
The Solicitor General sought time to seek instructions for granting an opportunity to persons to deposit their money on a case-by-case basis.
The government has also given a last chance to district cooperative banks, commercial banks and post offices to deposit the invalid Rs500 and Rs1,000 notes with the Reserve Bank by 20 July, provided they were collected within the specified time period.
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Noting the government can not seek to deny its citizens of their own property, SC said it is a serious issue if people with bonafide reasons are denied another chance.
The Court has reprimanded the Centre and said that it can not set up a deadline for depositing demonetised currency. As per the rule, if the people who couldn't depsit the old notes in banks could still do it till March 31, 2017 at RBI branches.
"If a person can prove it is his money and he/she had real difficulty in depositing by December 31, he must get a chance to change them", the apex court said.
The apex court had on March 6 sought responses of the Centre and RBI on why demonetised notes were not accepted till March 31 as was promised.
The centre had recently informed the apex court about the "conscious decision" not to increase the period beyond December 30 a year ago for exchange of the demonetized currency notes. Since these have now ended, those who could not deposit these notes are holding on to their old currency stick.
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