Published: Sun, January 01, 2017
World | By Tasha Manning

India's Modi defends decision to demonetize high-value bills

India's Modi defends decision to demonetize high-value bills

There were also no dramatic announcements in the PM's speech and no indication on whether he is going to inflict another blow in the guise of abolishing "benami" properties. He also asked the Prime Minister to share with the nation how many old currency notes had come back to the RBI and what the government plans to do with them.

At that time, Modi said that by December 30, normalcy was likely to return.

People in India have until the end of Friday to deposit discontinued notes in bank and post office accounts, or risk their money becoming worthless.

While there will be detailed analysis of the reforms, the prime minister has sent out a clear message in his New Year's Eve address: While the honest can expect ache din, it will surely be bure din (tough times) for the corrupt.

Two new schemes under PMAY have been announced-Those availing loans upto Rs 9 lakh for buying homes in 2017 will get interest concession (subventions) of 4 percent.

It comes only weeks before Uttar Pradesh, India's most populous state with 200 million people, holds an election that will test whether the popular leader has been significantly weakened.

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Also, Modi announced raising credit guarantees for MSMEs and converting Kisan credit card to Rupay cards. "But the events that occurred after November 8 forced us to reflect on that", he said, adding that it was inspiring how ordinary Indians had come forward to fight the evil within.

For pregnant women, the Prime Minster said, Rs 6000 assistance will be given and the amount would be transferred to their accounts.

Modi also talked about role of black money in political funding saying, "When corruption and black money is brought up, political funding becomes a large part of it".

While cash shortages have eased somewhat, bankers and analysts said the situation is far from normal and could last at least another six months.

In another scheme, senior citizens will be now be eligible for 8 percent interest on their deposits up to Rs. 7.5 lakh for 10 years. "Mahatma Gandhi is not anymore but people have shown that his spirit lives on".

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