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HomePaper MoneyIndia to Introduce One Rupee Note Back into Circulation

India to Introduce One Rupee Note Back into Circulation


By CoinWeek News Staff….
According to a February 13 press release from Alpana Killawala, Principal Chief General Manager at the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), the Indian government is set to reintroduce one-rupee notes back into circulation.

The Republic of India discontinued the production of one rupee (₹1) notes in November 1994 because they cost more to produce than they were worth. The government also stopped printing ₹2 and ₹5 notes in 1995, and since that date one-, two- and five-rupee coins have circulated instead.

Interestingly, the new notes will be issued by the Government of India and not the Reserve Bank. The authority to print one-rupee notes is vested in the government according to Indian law, and the decision to make new ₹1 notes appears to be due to political in-fighting between the government and the RBI.

Earlier, the RBI had informed the government that the repeal of Section 2 of the Indian Currency Ordinance had divested the government of its authority to print the notes. The government, after consulting with the Law Ministry, states that the Coinage Act of 2011 grants them the power to issue ₹1 notes as replacements for the one-rupee coin.

The RBI prints all other denominations, with ₹10, ₹20, ₹50, ₹100, ₹500 and ₹1,000 bank notes currently in circulation.

Similar situations exist elsewhere, such as in Bangladesh, where there was some confusion recently as to whether or not the Bangladeshi government would discontinue their own low-denomination notes.

About the Design

Front (Obverse): The front of the new note will be predominantly pink and green. A representation of an Ashokan pillar will appear in a window . The Pillars of Ashoka is one of the national symbols of India, built all over the country by the Mauryan King Ashoka (ruled 304-232 BCE) after he famously converted to Buddhism on the site of a particularly bloody battle. The pillars consisted of a tall column capped by a capital containing anywhere from one to four lions, though not all pillars have remained intact. Indian currency frequently features the famous four-lion capital from the pillar at Sarnath, rendered as three lions since it’s portrayed from the front. The numeral “1” will be hidden in the center of the note’s design.

Back (Reverse): The color scheme will still involve pink and green, but the back will be relatively multicolored compared to the front. It will feature an image of the offshore oil exploration rig Sagar Samrat, which was built in Japan and delivered to India in 1973. Sagar Samrat is no stranger to Indian currency, having appeared on the reverse of the 1989 ₹1 note. The face value of one rupee will be written in 15 different languages.


At the time of writing, one Indian rupee (INR) trades for approximately $0.02 USD.






Coinweek is the top independent online media source for rare coin and currency news, with analysis and information contributed by leading experts across the numismatic spectrum.

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  1. … and I thought the US was the only country whose government was unhinged enough to waste money by printing low-value banknotes. Our continued production of $1 bills doesn’t have a Stupidity Rank anywhere near making a TWO CENT note.


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