Polymer notes soon?

In a bid to overcome the menace of fake currency notes, the Centre is considering to print currency notes on polymer, a practice prevalent in Australia.The government is toying with the idea of requesting the Australian government to provide the technological knowhow for polymer currency notes, which is durable and difficult to counterfeit, an official source said. “Australian notes are more secure against counterfeiting. The notes are printed on polymer substrate instead of traditional paper,” the official said.The Australian notes are printed on special polymer and have a distinctive feel. A suspect note is excessively thick compared to a genuine note. “The vast majority of counterfeit notes are printed on paper and can be easily torn,” he said. Besides, polymer notes are environment friendly. “Paper notes degrade fast also,” the source said.Moreover, the biggest advantage of polymer notes is that less recycling is needed. “As polymer notes last four times more than paper notes, there is less waste which is good for both the environment and the economy,” the official said. Seizures of fake currency notes from time to time show that most of the security features in various denominations have been replicated, ringing alarm bells in the home ministry.The counterfeit notes, recovered recently from an SBI branch at Dumariyaganj in Uttar Pradesh, could be just the tip of the iceberg. Against this backdrop, Union home secretary Madhukar Gupta chaired a high-level meeting to review steps being taken to deal with the menace and favoured setting up of a nodal cell in all states.

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