Fake currency swamps Pune market
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166 cases since 2008, 141 of them registered by banks; fake notes of Rs 22 lakh recovered, more believed to be in circulation
Counterfeit currency notes difficult to detect without a machine has been flooding the Pune market in a big way, leading to concern. While Fake India Currency Notes (FICN) have been affecting local traders and shopowners, banks are the worst hit.
As per details obtained by The Indian Express under the RTI Act from Pune city police, 166 complaints of fake currency (under section 489 of IPC) were registered between January 2008 and April 2012. Of these, 141 were by banks in the city. C V R Rajendran, executive director, Bank of Maharashtra said, "FICN of over Rs 12 lakh were found in our banks last year. The money cannot be recovered; the bank is at a loss." In January, Narayan Peth branch of the HDFC Bank lodged a complaint at Vishrambaug police station against unknown persons for depositing FICN of around Rs 4 lakh before December 2011. There were 54 fake notes of Rs 1,000 denomination, 728 of Rs 500 denomination and 38 of Rs 50 denomination.
Banks are installing fake currency detector machines to save themselves from losses. When a fake note is detected, banks either tear it or put a cancellation mark on it and return it to customers. A few days ago, Sumit Dole who runs a shop at Kothrud deposited cash at the UCO bank. The bank staff put a cancellation mark on one of the Rs 1,000 notes he deposited, saying it was a fake. "It was a loss of Rs 1,000 for me. There are persons who have suffered higher losses due to FICN, that look so genuine it is tough to identify it as a fake," said Dole.
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