Rajkot (Guj), Nov 12: A city-based evening newspaper, which published a news item as a prank on its readers on April Fools Day saying the government will scrap Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes, has been flooded with calls ever since the government demonetised them. The daily--Akila--is at pains now explaining to one and all that it was just an April fool prank as the picture of the story published on April 1, 2016, has gone viral on social media after the government's overnight decision on Tuesday.
"We had published the news on April 1, as a prank on our readers that high denomination notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 will be discontinued. Its nothing but a coincidence that the news eventually turned out to be true after six months," owner and editor of the eveninger, Kirit Ganatra told PTI. There is a tradition in Gujarat that every local language newspaper gives one prank news on April Fool Day. The next day it is clarified in the newspaper that the particular news was a prank, those close to the establishment said adding that this is generally enjoyed by the readers.
People might at that time forgot the story as a prank, but when it turned out to be true, the daily was flooded with calls and messages on how it got the news. The story which was published at that time said that NDA government has decided to curb blackmoney and corruption by scrapping these high denomination notes. In his speech on November 8, announcing demonetisation of the currency of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes Prime Minister Narendra Modi also made similar points.
The daily had to publish a clarification it its November 10 issue saying, "This news item was purely a prank for All Fools' Day. There is no substance in reports that it was based on information leaked by officials." Akila further said demonetisation of high currency notes has been discussed for long in the country.