The Delhi High Court on Monday dismissed a petition challenging the Reserve Bank of India’s decision to withdraw Rs 2,000 currency notes from circulation, reported Live Law.
The Reserve Bank had announced the decision to withdraw the notes on May 19, saying that the denomination was not being commonly used for transactions. The central bank had said that the Rs 2,000 denomination will remain legal tender but asked people to exchange or deposit them in their accounts by September 30.
In his petition, advocate Rajneesh Bhaskar Gupta had argued that the Reserve Bank had no power to independently order the withdrawal of the notes and that only the Centre can take the decision, reported Live Law.
Gupta had also contended that withdrawing the note only after four to five years of circulation within a specific deadline was “unjust, arbitrary and against the public policy”.
He submitted that central bank had not said what benefit does the decision offer to banks or the country’s economy. The plea also said crores of rupees have been spent on printing the notes and it “will be wasted” due to such withdrawal, according to Live Law.
A detailed order on the judgement is awaited.
In May, the High Court had dismissed a similar plea filed by Bharatiya Janata Party leader Ashwini Upadhyay. In his plea, the BJP leader had challenged the central bank’s decision to deposit or exchange Rs 2,000 notes without any requisition slip and identity proof, arguing that it was arbitrary, irrational and against Article 14, which guarantees equality before the law.
The Rs 2,000 notes were issued after the November 2016 decision of demonetisation when Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 denominations were abruptly withdrawn in what the government claimed was a move to fight corruption. Experts believe that the decision was destructive for the economy as well as large sections of the population, some of which are still reeling from its effects.
In 2019, the central bank had reduced the printing of Rs 2,000 notes to a minimum.