New Delhi, Nov 9: Secret was the success. When Prime Minister Narendra Modi began his address to the nation on Tuesday, none expected that he would declare the Rs 500 and 1,000 notes as invalid. None had even an inkling for the past six months that such an announcement would be made.
The decision to ban these notes was on the anvil for the past six months. The main intention of weeding out these notes was to tackle both black money and fake currency.
Apart from the Prime Minister, the others who knew of this decision were finance minister Arun Jaitley, Finance Secretary Ashok Lavasa, the RBI governors in the past six months and Economic Affairs Secretary, Shaktikanta Das.
The plan to withdraw the notes was set in motion six months back. However, the final decision was taken two months back. It was meant to a highly secretive affair and the Prime Minister did not want any road blocks. It was a decision that was meant to be a secret and the top brass wanted it implemented at any cost.
Various aspects were discussed before making such a sudden announcement. While it was decided that it needed to be done, the only concern was the implementation of the same.
Modi in fact declared on Tuesday that these notes would become invalid by midnight. The top brass was ready to deal with the problems in implementing this decision. It had to be done, said a senior officer and this was the only way to do it he added.