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Indian Government Announces New Measures to Ease Cash Shortage in the Country

Government has increased the weekly withdrawal limit from 20,000 to 24,000

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old notes to become illeagal by 2017
Indian Currency. Pixabay
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November 16, 2016: The government of India took a big step to uncover the black money in the country. The government demonetized ₹500 and ₹1000 banknotes on 8th November, 2016 and ceased the use of the banknotes in any form of legal tender in India.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the people in an unscheduled live televised address at 8:15 pm the same day. In the announcement, Modi declared the usage of ₹500 and ₹1000 banknotes and told everyone that the notes can be exchanged at the banks until December 30. But a long queue outside every ATM and bank has hampered the process, mentioned Reuters.

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It seems that RBI was not prepared to face the demonetization. RBI didn’t have enough supply of the notes for the exchange. Also, the new notes of ₹2000 are of different size and so the ATM machines need to be modified to dispense the notes. There is a long queue of people waiting to exchange their notes. ATMs are running out of cash faster as they can dispense only ₹100 notes.

The under-preparedness of government has led to the creation of extreme chaos. The move is considered economically imprudent.

According to Reuters report, people are desperate for cash and so the workforce is wasting long hours standing in the long queues at the Banks and the ATMs. The abrupt call-back for the 86% of the country’s cash has brought the economy to a standstill.  The wide conjecture on property and gold has affected the economic stability and investments.

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The people most hard hit by the demonetization are the ones in the rural areas who do not have a bank account. Indians who rely on cash for their daily transactions are struggling to pay for the basic commodities.

In a political rally in Uttar Pradesh, Modi said, “I am aware you are facing difficulties… I understand the inconvenience.”

“I am really pained by the inconvenience and that is why I am working tirelessly to help people overcome this situation.”

“I will never let anyone loot money that belongs to India’s poor.”

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The government has been trying hard to deal with the cash crunch. New micro cash machines will be installed across the country and banks are asked to waive off the transaction charges on credit and debit cards.

India’s secretary for Economic Affairs, Shaktikanta Das, told reporters that government has increased the weekly withdrawal limit from 20,000 to 24,000. He also said that the re-calibrated cash machines would start to dispense new 2,000 rupee notes within two days.

The government has allowed a network of banking correspondents to provide people from rural area access to the banking services.

Prepared by Diksha Arya of NewsGram. Twitter: @diksha_arya53

 

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Aadhaar Helpline Mystery: French Security Expert Tweets of doing a Full Disclosure Tomorrow about Code of the Google SetUP Wizard App

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Google Along with Other SSocial Media Giants will Face The Lawmakers, Wikimedia Commons
Google Along with Other SSocial Media Giants will Face The Lawmakers, Wikimedia Commons

Google’s admission that it had in 2014 inadvertently coded the 112 distress number and the UIDAI helpline number into its setup wizard for Android devices triggered another controversy on Saturday as India’s telecom regulator had only recommended the use of 112 as an emergency number in April 2015.

After a large section of smartphone users in India saw a toll-free helpline number of UIDAI saved in their phone-books by default, Google issued a statement, saying its “internal review revealed that in 2014, the then UIDAI helpline number and the 112 distress helpline number were inadvertently coded into the SetUp wizard of the Android release given to OEMs for use in India and has remained there since”.

Aadhaar Helpline Number Mystery: French security expert tweets of doing a full disclosure tomorrow about Code of the Google SetUP Wizard App, Image: Wikimedia Commons.

However, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) recommended only in April 2015 that the number 112 be adopted as the single emergency number for the country.

According to Google, “since the numbers get listed on a user’s contact list, these get  transferred accordingly to the contacts on any new device”.

Google was yet to comment on the new development.

Meanwhile, French security expert that goes by the name of Elliot Alderson and has been at the core of the entire Aadhaar controversy, tweeted on Saturday: “I just found something interesting. I will probably do full disclosure tomorrow”.

“I’m digging into the code of the @Google SetupWizard app and I found that”.

“As far as I can see this object is not used in the current code, so there is no implications. This is just a poor coding practice in term of security,” he further tweeted.

On Friday, both the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) as well as the telecom operators washed their hand of the issue.

While the telecom industry denied any role in the strange incident, the UIDAI said that he strange incident, the UIDAI said that some vested interests were trying to create “unwarranted confusion” in the public and clarified that it had not asked any manufacturer or telecom service provider to provide any such facility.

Twitter was abuzz with the new development after a huge uproar due to Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) Chairman R.S. Sharma’s open Aadhaar challenge to critics and hackers.

Ethical hackers exposed at least 14 personal details of the TRAI Chairman, including mobile numbers, home address, date of birth, PAN number and voter ID among others. (IANS)

Also Read: Why India Is Still Nowhere Near Securing Its Citizens’ Data?