Whose truth should we believe?

Whose truth should we believe?: The versions of the RBI and Finance Ministry on demonetisation preparations don’t match...

Word play on truth

This refers to TCA Sharad Raghavan’s piece “Whose truth should we believe?” (FinMin, February 20). This is what happens when one applies his mind on the subject for writing an article after deciding the caption! Which are the truths the reader is asked to choose from? The issues raised include:
(a)  Did the consultations between GOI and RBI on demonetization start from January 2016 or February 2016? Does January 31 or February 1 alter the decision announced on November 8, 2016?
(b) Finance Minister said on the floor of Parliament that the Reserve Bank of  India approved the designs of new high value notes in May 2016. By doing this, did RBI act outside its mandate?
(c)  While changes in instructions may be for meeting the felt needs in different situations, one hopes that the ‘alleged clearly illegal transportation of new notes in bulk’ has been brought to the notice of authorities responsible for probing violations.
(d) Inadequate preparations. Lapses were there which were rectified midway. Secrecy would not have come in the way of reducing supply of high value notes in suburban and rural areas or increasing the supply of lower denomination notes across geographies or for that matter re-calibrating select ATMs faster, making them ready to dispense new design high value notes.
(e)  A question has been raised as to why RBI Central Board did not deliberate on demonetization in three earlier meetings prior to November 8, 2016. Perhaps, the issue needed to get included in the agenda first.
Which are the truths to choose from?
M G Warrier, Mumbai


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