The number of fake currency notes detected dropped by 31.4 per cent in 2017-18 compared to the previous year due to introduction of high security feature notes making counterfeit difficult, the RBI’s annual report said. However, in case of Rs 100 denomination note, there was an increase of 35 per cent in counterfeit notes detected and a significant 154.3 per cent rise in counterfeit notes detected in the denomination of Rs 50, the annual report said.

“In the Mahatma Gandhi (New) Series of banknotes in the denominations of Rs 500 and Rs 2000, counterfeit notes detected during 2017-18 were 9,892 and 17,929 as against 199 and 638, respectively during the previous year,” the report said.

“Counterfeit notes detected in specified bank notes decreased by 59.7 and 59.6 per cent in the denominations of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000, respectively, as the same comprised only the residual part of SBN deposits processed during the year 2017-18,” it added.

Commenting on this, Economic Affairs Secretary S C Garg said, last year RBI report said that fake notes were very miniscule.

“This is very small number rather ignorable. It’s not that system had lot of fake notes,” he said.

Demonetisation announced in November 2016 virtually weeded out fake note in the system and in the last one year and 10 months there has not been single case of single high quality fake not due to introduction of high security feature note, he added.

Out of the total Fake Indian Currency Notes (FICNs) detected, the share of FICNs detected at the Reserve Bank was higher at 36.1 per cent as compared to 4.3 per cent during the previous year.

This was because of processing of large volume of SBNs withdrawn from circulation.

The total expenditure incurred on security printing during the year (July 2017 – June 2018) stood at Rs 4912 crore as against Rs 7,965 crore in 2016-17 (the year of demonetisation was undertaken).