Commenting on the demonetisation of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 currency notes, Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted that it is heartening to learn people are bearing the "limited" inconvenience with enthusiasm and patience for a greater good. PM Modi is currently in Japan on a three-day visit.
His tweet read: "Such warmth, enthusiasm & the patience to bear limited inconvenience for a greater good is indeed very heartening."
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Such warmth, enthusiasm & the patience to bear limited inconvenience for a greater good is indeed very heartening.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) November 10, 2016
In another tweet, he said,"It is also heartening to learn that people are actively volunteering to help senior citizens withdraw money & exchange their currency."
It is also heartening to learn that people are actively volunteering to help senior citizens withdraw money & exchange their currency.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) November 10, 2016
However, contrary to what PM Modi has tweeted, the ground reality in India is quite different.
On 8 November, Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a surprise address to the nation shocked people by announcing that Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 currency notes would no longer be considered legal tender starting midnight.
Here is the ground reality of what happened after PM Modi's announcement that left nation cashless:
1. An infant - a boy - died, according to Mumbai Mirror, a day after being denied treatment by Jeevan Jyot Hospital and Nursing Home in Govandi, near Mumbai.
According to his parents, the hospital had refused to accept the deposit in Rs500 denominations which ceased to be legal tender starting 8 November midnight.
2. According to reports, a middle-aged homemaker in Telangana committed suicide on learning that bank notes of Rs 54.40 lakh she had stored in denominations of 1,000 and 500 rupees were "as good as waste paper."
Kandukuri Vinoda, 55, had sold 12 acres of agricultural land for Rs 56.40 lakh. From this money, she had spent Rs 2 lakh on treatment for her husband who suffered a paralytic stroke and kept the remaining amount to spend on her daughter's marriage and buy another piece of land, reports Hindustan Times.
3. In another case, a Faizabad-based businessman died of a heart attack after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced that Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes will be illegal tenders, reported Financial Express.
4. Ever since the announcement was made there has been a state of panic and confusion across the nation with a lack of clear information. Long queues at banks and ATM booths is the most common sight today. Plenty of roads are currently jammed because of the day-long queues.Also Read: Demonetisation program: Read to end your confusion, especially those who have undisclosed cash
5. Paytm, an Indian e-commerce website that allows cashless payments, has been congratulating Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the move. It tweeted "Paytm karo" (use Paytm) but people standing in queues for more than two-three hours are asking, "ATM kaise karo" (how to use ATMs?), since the ATMs are still not working.
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The Union government had announced that the ATMs would function properly on 11 November, but the reality is -- none are functioning as they need to be reconfigured.
6. It has become a golden time for Paytm, but those on roads with no fuel in their vehicles, no groceries at home, having big family functions such as weddings etc are left helpless.
As per the government's announcement, one can withdraw Rs 2,000 per day from ATMs (when they start functioning), Rs.4,000 can be exchanged from banks, and only up to Rs 10,000 can be withdrawn via cheque with a limit of Rs 20,000 per week.
7. After PM Modi's announcement, banks announced that the current surcharge levied on using ATMs of different banks has been waived for now. Many customers had demanded the surcharge to be waived on using ATMs of their own banks as well.
8. Many are finding it difficult to reach their offices and other destinations; travellers, tourists have no idea what to do as the cash they are carrying is suddenly illegal tender. Indians staying abroad remain unaware of how they should exchange their new notes as the currency exchange counters have refused to accept the old denominations of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000.
9. To everybody's amazement, the Union government has introduced new notes Rs 500 Rs 1,000 and Rs 2,000 in contradiction to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's argument that the high-value denominations are used in more than 80% of fake and black money.
10. Many have raised the question that in a country like India where 1% of the richest Indians own more than 50% of India's wealth, then, why the 99% of people are thrown into trouble while the biggest players of black money rest in peace.