‘Confiscating cash was not aim,’ Arun Jaitley on 2 years of demonetisation

Mumbai, Nov 8(DC): On the second anniversary of demonetisation, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said the decision never aimed to confiscate currency but to get it into the formal economy and make the holders pay tax.

As the opposition targeted the Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government on the move, Jaitley described demonetisation as “a key step in a chain of important decisions taken by the government to formalise the economy”.

In a Facebook post, the Union Finance Minister wrote, "An ill-informed criticism of the demonetisation is that almost the entire cash money got deposited in the banks. Confiscation of currency was not an objective of demonetisation. Getting it into the formal economy and making the holders pay tax was the broader objective".

He also said that the government first targeted the black money outside India and asset holders were asked to bring this money back on payment of penal tax.


“Those who failed to do so are being prosecuted under the Black Money Act. Details of all accounts and assets abroad which have reached the government, resulted in action against the violators,” he added.

Jaitley also said that following the note ban, it is “now becoming increasingly difficult to evade the tax system”.

“In May, 2014, when the present Government was elected the total number of the filers of income tax returns was 3.8 crore. In the first four years of this Government, it has increased to 6.86 crore. By the time the first five years of this Government are over, we will be close to doubling the assessee base,” the finance minister wrote.

Defending demonetisation, he further said, “The system required to be shaken in order to make India move from cash to digital transactions. This would obviously have an impact on higher tax revenue and a higher tax base.”

On November 8, 2016, the Centre had declared Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes as non-legal and introduced new Rs 500 and Rs 2,000 notes.

Since then, several opposition leaders have highly criticised PM Modi while the members of the BJP and its allies have supported the decision.


Comment on this article

  • SMR, Karkala

    Thu, Nov 8 2018

    The demonetisation disaster by the Narendra Modi government was an “ill-fated and ill-thought exercise”.

    “Today marks the second anniversary of the ill-fated and ill-thought demonetisation exercise that the Narendra Modi government undertook in 2016. The havoc that it unleashed on the Indian economy and society is now evident to everyone. Notebandi impacted every single person, regardless of age, gender, religion, occupation or creed.”
    “It is often said that time is a great healer. But unfortunately, in the case of demonetisation, the scars and wounds of demonetisation are only getting more visible with time. Beyond the steep drop in headline GDP growth numbers after demonetisation, the deeper ramifications of notebandi are still unraveling. Small and medium businesses that are the cornerstone of India’s economy are yet to recover from the demonetisation shock,”.
    2 years after demonetisation, it’s clear that ‘black money’ was neither burned nor drowned in rivers, as the PM had claimed. The rich have become richer and Narendra Modi has gone silent.
    While circumstantial evidence points the finger to the PM, the following questions are yet to be answered:
    • Who planned demonetisation of 86% of the currency?
    • Why was November 8, 2016, chosen and by whom?
    • On whose advice was the exercise undertaken?
    Clearly, even two years after demonetization, the country does not know enough of what happened before and after November 8.
    Demonetisation is PM Mod pet project. He is the Architect of the Indian economic disaster. It is time to honor 50 days of promise said by PM Modi in Goa.

    Confiscating cash was not aim, then building statues and buying opposition leaders are BJP's first priorities?
    Jai Hind

    DisAgree Agree [7] Reply Report Abuse

  • Sanjay, Mangalore

    Thu, Nov 8 2018

    Arun Jaitley is the most dumb FM till date, It's surprising how he got this portfolio.
    Modi's image is fading due to FM's remarks even after committing blunders.

    DisAgree [1] Agree [12] Reply Report Abuse

  • Satya, Mangalore

    Thu, Nov 8 2018

    Demonetization exercise was nothing but a vengeful attack on opposition parties. The BJP with prior information had gotten rid of all its liquid cash and black money before the announcement was made. In the end Modi and his BJP have only messed up with the economy, lives of people across the country, brought untold misery on the nation and have made fools of themselves.

    DisAgree [1] Agree [12] Reply Report Abuse

  • Honnappa, Byadagi

    Thu, Nov 8 2018

    Then what to make common poor people to stand in queue for days to exchange their hard earned money. Only wealthy people belonging to ruling elite enjoyed. RBI and banks not yet paid by this central government for demonetisation expenses occured even after two years. A wasteful exercise.

    DisAgree Agree [13] Reply Report Abuse

  • Indian,, India

    Thu, Nov 8 2018

    While transplanting his kidney, may be brain also affected. Hope he will recover before election.

    DisAgree [1] Agree [17] Reply Report Abuse

  • Jossey Saldanha, Mumbai

    Thu, Nov 8 2018

    Modi gave an opportunity to all his friends to make all their "Black Money into White" ...

    DisAgree Agree [28] Reply Report Abuse

  • RkR, Mangalore/ Dubai

    Thu, Nov 8 2018

    Money entering banking system, bank controlling it.
    Uv restricted banking customers and thought of earning from the same.

    DisAgree Agree [16] Reply Report Abuse

  • Antonio DSilva, Kuwait

    Thu, Nov 8 2018

    Too late!

    Demonetization was done to ensure that the little money the poor hundreds of millions of India mostly labor class used to keep under their pillows was brought into circulation so that the banks and the digital corporates could harvest their 'below minimum balance charges' and service charges from the little money these poor earned after slogging for a whole month.

    Arun and Modi please remember this demonetization carried out by you in November 2016 is akin to putting your hands into the stomachs of the poor Indians and grabbing their undigested food. God help you.

    DisAgree Agree [35] Reply Report Abuse

  • Joseph F. Gonsalves, Bannur, Puttur / Mangalore

    Thu, Nov 8 2018

    Demonetisation of Indian Currency was a mismanagement, a Plunder and Blunder, a calculated Loot from the Cow Government.

    Due to Demonetisation:

    India is ModiFied into Jobless.
    India is ModiFied into Lynchings.
    India is ModiFied into Corruptions.
    India is ModiFied into No Industries.
    India is ModiFied into Communalist's.
    India is ModiFied into Back door Entries.
    India is ModiFied into Aadar Card for Cows.
    India is ModiFied into men to women Rapists.
    India is ModiFied into Black money into Whites.
    India is ModiFied everything First Time in 71 Years.
    India is ModiFied into Dis-Unity among Communities.
    India is ModiFied into education duplicate Certificates.
    India's GDP is ModiFied into Gobar Declining Productions.
    India is ModiFied into Soldiers daily deaths on the Borders.
    India is ModiFied into a divide between veg- Non Vegetarians.

    DisAgree [1] Agree [34] Reply Report Abuse


    Thu, Nov 8 2018

    Due to demonetization thugs of Hindustan became rich over a night

    DisAgree [1] Agree [30] Reply Report Abuse

  • Pai, Mangalore

    Thu, Nov 8 2018

    CONgress has no right to talk about this. What did they do about black money and fake currency while they were in power?? NOTHING...
    But present Govt has done nothing about black money abroad.
    Also, the fake currency is still on... Govt should had brought in plastic notes.

    DisAgree [36] Agree [4] Reply Report Abuse

  • geoffrey, hat hill

    Thu, Nov 8 2018

    Demonetization itself was Tuglaki strategy, 'Should Had' plastic currency would've endorsed it further.

    DisAgree Agree [15] Reply Report Abuse

  • Pais, Mangalore

    Thu, Nov 8 2018

    @ Pai: Not only Congress, every single citizen of India has the right to ask the question to this Pee Cowernment.. What did you think, that once your Pee Party is in power no one should question them.. This is democracy maam.. not dhali toovey or Gobar or Gau Mutrr politics which only stink...

    By the way.. Jootley Bholey Kuvvaaa Katey

    DisAgree [1] Agree [8] Reply Report Abuse

  • Gangaram, Moodbidri

    Thu, Nov 8 2018

    Actually there was only one aim to increase BJP account nothing else.................

    example Jay Shah.............

    DisAgree [3] Agree [42] Reply Report Abuse

  • Nagesh, UDUPI

    Thu, Nov 8 2018

    Winning UP assembly elections was the only AIM

    DisAgree [3] Agree [39] Reply Report Abuse


    Thu, Nov 8 2018

    Due to demonetization 'Thugs of Hindustan' became rich(Ambani and Adani) over a night

    DisAgree [2] Agree [30] Reply Report Abuse

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