- Date : 31/05/2020
- Read: 4 mins
- Read in : हिंदी
Think the Rs 2,000 note was the highest currency note in Indian history? It’s time to think again!
You may have learned many interesting facts about India in GK classes in school. However, there are some super-interesting facts about Indian currency notes and coins that barely anybody seems to know. In this piece, we have curated some fascinating facts that will blow your mind!
1. The highest denomination currency note is...
No, Rs 2,000 is not the highest denomination currency note in Indian history – it was Rs 10,000! These high-value notes were first printed in 1938 and again in 1954. However, they were also demonetised twice; first in 1946 and then in 1978, when they were finally withdrawn from circulation.
2. Currency notes aren’t made from regular paper
Indian currency notes are not actually made of paper. Instead, they are made from a pulp that contains cotton, balsam, special dyes, and gelatin or polyvinyl alcohol. These ingredients help to increase the life of the notes by enhancing their strength.
Related: History of Indian currency
3. High-value coins have been issued in the past
India has issued quite a few commemorative coins in the past to celebrate certain events. In 2010, the RBI issued the first ever 75-rupee coin to celebrate its 75 years in the country. In 2011, 150-rupee coins were issued to celebrate the 150th birth anniversary of Rabindranath Tagore. And in 2012, the first 1000-rupee coin was announced to commemorate the 1000-year history of the Brihadeeswara temple in Tamil Nadu.
4. 15 languages feature on each currency note
India is a land of diverse cultures and languages – the constitution recognises 22 official languages. 15 of these official languages appear on Indian currency notes. There’s a language panel in the centre of each note that has the denomination of that note written in these 15 different languages.
5. A competition was held to design the rupee symbol
The rupee symbol as we know it (₹) was introduced in 2010. The government held an open competition to select the rupee symbol, which was won by D Udaya Kumar, an Indian academic and designer. The symbol is derived from a combination of the Devanagari letter 'र' and the Latin letter ‘R’.
6. In 2007, there was a severe shortage of coins in Kolkata
In 2007, a shortage of coins in Kolkata led shopkeepers to buy them at more than their face value. The reason for such a shortage has been speculated to be the melting and smuggling of coins to turn them into razor blades, ornaments, pen nibs, etc.
7. One can identify where the coin was minted
Currently, Indian coins are minted in four locations in the country – Mumbai, Noida, Hyderabad and Kolkata. Each coin has a unique shape right below the year that helps identify which city it was minted in. Mumbai is represented by a diamond, Delhi by a dot, Hyderabad by a star, and Kolkata mint has no mark at all.
8. Old currency notes are recycled
In 2011, activist Manoranjan Roy obtained data of what happens to Indian currency notes once they are past their usable life. Between 2001 and 2011, 11,661 crore currency notes had lost their value and were shredded. The shredded bits are put together to make coasters, pen stands, key chains, paperweights, etc.
Go ahead, get out your currency notes and coins to check some of these facts for yourself. And don’t forget to share these fun facts at the next dinner party to amaze your friends! What are the foreign currency options to consider when vacationing abroad? Read it here.