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Namrata Biji Ahuja
Namrata Biji Ahuja

Security measures

As people swarm ATMs and banks, MHA steps in to boost security

Railways-currency A railways staff counts currency notes | AP

In the wake of a large number of people queuing up in front of ATMs and banks following the government move to demonetise Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes, the Centre has taken steps to beef up security measures.

The Home Ministry has shot off an advisory to all states and UTs asking them make adequate security arrangements at all the ATMs, post offices and banks to prevent any untoward incidents. The MHA advisory comes in the backdrop of reports from central agencies, indicating that the rush at ATMs, banks and post offices is unlikely to decrease in the coming days and the patience of citizens is running thin in places where banks are either strapped for cash or ATMs are not functioning.

Security sources also pointed out that there is an apprehension of inimical forces and mischief mongers trying to take advantage of the situation and stir up unrest among people.

The demonetisation of Rs 1000 and Rs 500 currency notes has directly hit the plans of terrorist groups who were using fake Indian currency notes (FICN), printed across the border, to carry out their nefarious activities, a security official said, adding that there would be built up frustration among terror groups who may try to stir trouble in the coming days.

Keeping in mind the security concerns, the MHA not only wants adequate deployment of private security guards at all financial institutions, but is also asking states to rope in police forces to keep the law and order in control and deal with the huge crowds at the places where money transactions are taking place.

Home Minister Rajnath Singh had said on Thursday that the ''bold step'' of his government has shocked Pakistan whose motive was to destabilise the Indian economy.

The MHA and National Investigation Agency have several reports with evidence, indicating that the

FICN being circulated in India was printed using ''sophisticated machines and currency papers which can only be owned by a country/state'' .

Notably, India had already made out a strong case to the global inter-government body, Financial Action Task Force, asking it to recognise fake currency notes as an instrument of terror.

An MHA official said FICN was being used to fund terror operations in Jammu and Kashmir and other parts of the country for several years and recent seizures of FICNs have shown links to Pakistan from where such notes were smuggled through Nepal and Bangladesh to be circulated in the country.

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Topics : #Demonetization

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