NEW DELHI : The one rupee note will be back after 22 years. The government today said the smallest denomination note is printed and ready for release soon. The Re 1 note was discontinued in 1994, mainly because it was more expensive to produce the notes compared to the one-rupee coins. The next year, Rs. 2 and Rs. 5 notes were also pulled out to free printing facilities for higher denomination notes. The old notes are still in circulation and remain legal.
The new Re 1 note will be 9.7 by 8.3 cm and in a pink and green colour theme. Its previous avatar was of an indigo colour.The note will have ‘Bharat Sarkar’ on its masthead, with ‘Government of India’ printed below that. All other currencies have ‘Bharatiya Reserve Bank’ and ‘Reserve Bank of India’ printed on them.
The one-rupee note has always been issued by the central government while all the other denominations are issued by the RBI.According to an official statement, the watermarks of the Re 1 note will include the Ashoka Pillar, the hidden numeral “1” and the hidden word “Bharat (in Hindi)”.
The note will also feature a replica of the one rupee coin and an image of the ‘Sagar Samrat’ oil exploration rig. The printing of Re 1 notes started in January 2015 after reports of an acute coin shortage along with the rising instances of coins being melted and reused for a profit. But these were never released amid questions raised by the central bank on whether the government has the right to issue the notes. It does, said the law ministry.
The notes will have the signature of Rajiv Mehrishi, the Finance Secretary at the time, and current Economic Affairs Secretary Shaktikanta Das, who retires tomorrow. All other currency has the signature of the RBI governor.The new one rupee note will cost the taxpayer 94 paise, compared to the one rupee coin, which is 70 paise when melted and has the highest circulation.
This is the third new currency to be launched by the government since demonetization in November, when the highest value notes of Rs. 1,000 and Rs. 500 were banned overnight as a sweeping measure to check black or untaxed money. After the notes ban was announced on November 8 by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, brand new Rs. 2,000 and 500 notes were introduced with updated security features. The government said to match global standards, security features will be changed every few years.