India’s National Security Advisor [NSA] – Ajit Doval is said to be in possession of details of perfidious activities within India that could have [notice the past perfect tense] ruined Bharat’s economy.
Due to the sudden demonetisation, presses run and maintained by the Karnataka based Bharatiya Reserve Bank Note Mudran Private Limited (BRBNMPL), a wholly owned subsidiary of the Reserve Bank of India, are working overtime to bridge the gap between demand and supply.
According to the company’s own website, the presses are the latest in ‘state of the art’ technology in bank note printing. One of the companies that supplied machinery at its Mysore site is De La Rue Giori, now renamed KBA Giori, Switzerland.
That is where the sinister portion begins.And that is also why Modi cannot expose his own central bank’s smelly crannies.
In January 2016, the Indian Express reported that the Indian Home Ministry had barred a German company, Louisenthal, from selling bank note paper to the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) after it discovered that the firm was also selling raw notes to Pakistan, according to a senior official. Operative excerpts:
“We have proof that high-quality fake Indian currency notes are being produced in Pakistan and pushed into India through Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Vietnam. The availability of a common supplier could be one of the reasons behind such high-quality fake notes,” the official said.
Representatives of Louisenthal refused to comment when asked about its links with the UK-based De La Rue, which had been banned by the RBI after having come under the scanner following admissions of supplying paper that had “failed to meet certain quality specifications”.
India had sought help from the US, during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit last September, in tracking countries where bank note paper used to print fake Indian currency is manufactured.
Also read: http://wp.me/p7bYkZ-Lk
At least five cases were reported last year of Pakistani nationals being arrested in Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Thailand and UAE with consignments of fake Indian currency notes.
In 2009-10, the Central Bureau of Investigation [CBI] raided some 70-odd branches of various banks on the India-Nepal border and unearthed a counterfeit currency racket. Bank officials blurted to CBI sleuths that the notes had come from RBI. As a result, CBI raided RBI vaults and found a massive cache of Rs 500 and Rs. 1000 denomination notes that had been smuggled by the Pakistani intelligence agency ISI into India.
In 2010 the Committee on Public Undertakings (COPU), was shocked to find out that the Government had outsourced the printing of Rs 1 lakh crore of currency notes to US, UK and Germany putting the “entire economic sovereignty (of the country) at stake”.
The 3 companies to whom the Indian currency printing was outsourced are American Banknote Company (USA), Thomas De La Rue (UK) and Giesecke and Devrient Consortium (Germany).
Following the scandal, Reserve Bank sent a senior official on a fact-finding mission to De La Rue‘s printing plant in Hampshire, UK.
A third of De la Rue’s profits did not include profits earned through new contracts – that encompassed sale of 95% of its security paper sold to many nations among whom India and Pakistan are important ones, was the prima facie finding.
As a result, De La Rue was blacklisted by the government with 2000 metric tonnes of its paper lying unused at printing presses and warehouses.
De la Rue’s CEO James Hussey who is the godson of the Queen of England quit the company mysteriously. De la Rue’s shares tanked and it almost went bankrupt losing one of its most valuable customers – RBI. Its French rival Oberthur approached De la Rue with a bid to take over the company which was fought back.
The complaints sent to the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) by ‘unnamed officers of the Ministry of Finance’ mentioned other companies too. These include French firm Arjo Wiggins, Crane AB of USA and Louisenthal, Germany.
The scandal had just surfaced under the United Progressive Alliance government. Rather ironically, the potty ex-PM Dr Manmohan Singh proverbially termed the NDA kettle black!
Operative excerpts from a relevant press statement: Privet Capital, a private equity investor focused on creating value through operational improvement, acquired Cash Processing Solutions Limited [CPS] and its subsidiaries from De La Rue.
CPS specialises in providing cash processing hardware, software and related services to central banks, commercial banks, state print-works and commercial cash processing companies. Its sorting solutions process 125 billion banknotes per annum from operations in 106 countries, supported by a team of over 500 people.
De La Rue announced that it will continue to print currency at its factory in Malta. The company has been working in Malta for over 40 years and last year announced that it was creating a Centre of Excellence for Identity and Security Print in Malta, as part of a global investment of €33 million in equipment, factory upgrades and skills.
The facility at Malta is the World’s largest commercial printer of both banknotes and passports. The announcement came on the back of a solid business performance by the firm. Martin Sutherland, the firm’s CEO confirmed that the move was designed to provide the flexibility to meet current and future customer requirements.
‘We have refined the implementation plan for our Global footprint to give us a better blend of outsourcing with a more flexible in house production capacity, and as a result will be keeping the remaining banknote print line open in Malta,’ a company press release revealed.
Contrary to previous intentions, De La Rue will not be reducing its workforce and will not be offering further voluntary retirement schemes, the statement added.
Malta is one of the global centres of diabolically sinister financial activity.
In his report, journalist MK Venu  in 2015 – wrote the chilling words: “Tax havens like Mauritius, Malta, Bahamas and the Cayman islands still operate in non-transparent ways”.
The nature of the scofflaw nature of Malta can be guessed with one simple yardstick. One of its new citizens is Lalit Kumar Modi – the man against whom India’s official ministry claims to have issued Interpol’s red-corner-notice.
The UN is aware of such developments – with a savage twist – terrorism – since 2004!
The United Nations Questionnaire on the Nature of Links between Terrorism and other Forms of Crime” was sent to Member States pursuant to UN General Assembly resolution 58/136, adopted upon the recommendation of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice and ECOSOC, on “the need to strengthen international cooperation and technical assistance in promoting the implementation of the universal conventions and protocols related to terrorism within the framework of the activities of the UNODC”.
The resolution invited Member States to provide the Secretary-General with information on the nature of links between terrorism and other forms of crime and to comment on whether terrorist groups’ modus operandi.
India reported that terrorist groups are involved in organized criminal activities of various kinds, including arms trafficking, money laundering, corruption, trafficking in persons, and drug trafficking.
In India, specific instances have come to the attention of the authorities regarding the financing of terrorist acts and the use of informal money transfer systems such as the hawala system. India reported that such underground banking systems have substantial links with the underworld and money laundering channels which, in turn are linked to terrorist activities.
Important links between terrorist financing and economic crime were funded by counterfeiting of currencies. Fake Indian currency notes have been systematically used by terrorists to finance their activities in India. Organized crime groups have also contributed to the circulation of the forged currency in India and abroad. India reported that there had been cooperation between organized crime groups and terrorists for a long time, but that a significant new development on this front was the fact that organized crime gangs and terrorists outfits had begun to work “in consonance”. There are numerous instances of the involvement of organized crime 27 gangs in terrorism. The attack on the U.S. Information Centre, Kolkata (January 2002) is an example of such collaborations.
[All emphasised portions are by the author]
M.K. Venu is a Founding Editor of The Wire. As an active economic and political writer, he has held leadership roles in reputed newspapers such as The Economic Times, The Financial Express and The Hindu. He has written extensively on economic policy matters for over a quarter century after India opened up its economy in 1991. He also wrote regular political economy columns on the edit pages of The Economic Times, Financial Express and Indian Express over the past two decades. He hosts a regular political-economy discussion called ‘State of the Economy’ on the national public broadcast channel RSTV. He has also been invited by Parliamentary Committees to give his views on public policy matters. He is on Twitter @mkvenu1.