The Supreme Court today asked the Centre to consider giving grace time to those who couldn’t deposit old notes in banks for genuine reasons post November 8 demonetisation move.
The apex court has given two weeks time to the Centre and Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to decide on giving more time to people with genuine reasons to deposit the now out of use Rs 1000, 500 notes. “You can’t take away my money if I was terminally ill,” the Supreme Court bench said while slamming the government over its December 30 deadline to deposit old notes in banks.
A bench comprising Chief Justice J S Khehar and Justice DY Chandrachud asked Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar, representing the Centre, to take instructions on the issue.
In April, the Centre had informed the Supreme Court that it took a “conscious decision” not to extend the period beyond December 30 last year for exchanging the demonetised currency notes of Rs 1000 and Rs 500 unlike for NRIs which ended on March 31.
The government said it was not legally bound to come out with a fresh notification to grant grace period or window for depositing scrapped currency notes.
It also gave details about the raids and recoveries made by law-enforcing agencies during and after the demonetisation period claiming that undisclosed income of over Rs 5,400 crore was detected.
In its affidavit filed in the apex court, the government said, “It is most humbly submitted that the central government took a conscious decision that no necessity or any justifiable reason exists either in law or on facts to invoke its power under section 4(1)(ii) of the Ordinance to entitle any person to tender within the grace period the specified bank notes.”
The affidavit was filed in response to petitions by private individuals and a firm seeking a window like those given to NRIs and people who were abroad during the period of demonetisation to deposit the scrapped currency notes with the Reserve Bank of India