Currency

The currency used in India is known as “Rupee” and the name was derived from the word Rup or Rupa and in Hindi language, these words mean Silver. While in Sanskrit language, the word Rupayakam is referred to silver coins.

The weight of original Rupee (Rupaya) was approx 11.34 gm and it remained in the country for quite long period of time. Even during the British Reign it was in use.

While India was using currency in Silver, some of the economically strong countries around the world were using currency in Gold. Thus, the difference between the two was obvious. Since India had silver currency, the amount of whatever was bought using the currency was very less compared to those countries using currency in gold. So, this time period when India currency was not able to do better compared to Gold currency or its buying capacity was low, was referred as the ‘Fall of Rupee’.

After a long period of time, the trend of using paper money came into existence not only in India but in most parts of the world. This trend was started by the Bank of Hindustan. Also the Bank of Bengal & Bihar also started using paper currency.

After some time a paper act was passed by the Indian Government in the year 1861. According to this act only Government had the right to issue paper money to the vast Indian expanse. In the end, all the management related to currency was handover to the Mint Ministers and the Currency Controller.

The central bank of India known as the Reserve bank of India came into existence in the year 1935 and its first central office was located in Calcutta (Kolkatta).For some time after it started its operations related to currency, the bank didn’t have any option other than issuing the Government notes but later on it started the issuing of its own series of Currency Notes.

First paper Note issued by the central bank was of five rupees in 1938. This note had the image of George VI and thereafter, the paper Notes for 10 Rupees, 100 Rupees and 1000 Rupees and 10,000 Rupees were introduced in the month June, 1938. These first Notes by the Reserve Bank of India carried the initials of Sir Thomas Taylor who was second Governor.

After the country got independence in 1947, Government came out with the new proposal for one-rupee note in 1949 according to which the new Note would have the image of Mahatma Gandhi on it. But it could not be cultivated into real and the Note had the image of Lion and the capital of Ashoka on it. By1953, Hindi language could be clearly seen on the Note and with the evolvement of decimalization system; one-rupee note was divided into 100 paisa or paise.
Current series of Notes carrying the image of Mahatma Gandhi were introduced in 1996 and the other features included in today’s currency Notes are watermark, latent image, and intaglio features so that visually handicapped people can use it without any problem.