The Delhi High Court on May 30 reserved its verdict on a public interest litigation (PIL) petition challenging the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) decision to withdraw ₹2,000 denomination currency notes from circulation.
This is the second petition filed before the court on the issue.
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On Monday, the High Court rejected a previous PIL plea seeking a direction to the government to not allow exchange of ₹2,000 banknotes, without obtaining any requisition slip and identity proof.
“This decision of the government is purely a policy decision and courts should not sit as an appellate authority over the decision taken by the government,” the court had said.
The second petition was filed by Rajneesh Bhaskar Gupta, who contended that the RBI had no independent power to direct non-issuance or discontinuance of banknotes of any denominational value and this power was vested only with the Centre under Section 24 (2) of the RBI Act, 1934.
The petition said the RBI notification gave no other reason except “Clean Note Policy” for the “big arbitrary decision of withdrawing the ₹2,000 denomination banknotes from circulation without analysis of the expected problems of the public at large”.
“The RBI has not cleared so far what is the benefit to it or national economy after withdrawing the ₹2,000 banknotes from circulation, however the hardship to the citizen of the country is very well known and seen during the demonetisation of ₹500 and ₹1,000 notes in the year 2016 and withdrawal of ₹2,000 is not much different from previous demonetisation,” the plea said.
The plea was opposed by the RBI which said it was only withdrawing ₹2,000 notes from circulation which was a “currency management exercise” and a matter of economic policy.
Senior advocate Parag P. Tripathi, representing the RBI, said the High Court had already dismissed another PIL plea on the same circular/notification.