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84% surveyed found laundering common post-demonetisation

New Delhi, Dec 2 (IANS) A survey participated in by 4,799 respondents said 84 per cent of them found laundering to be common post the demonetisation of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes on November 8.

According to the survey conducted by the Local Circles citizen engagement platform, "84 percent people think that laundering became common post-demonetisation."

Respondents were asked whether they had a direct experience or knowledge of money laundering activities taking place and 30 per cent said that it was easy to do so while 54 per cent of them said that it was being done but with difficulty.

Only 3 per cent said that laundering was not happening while 13 per cent did not have an opinion.

As per the Reserve Bank of India and bank reports, deposits exceeding Rs 11 lakh crore in the old currency notes have been received by banks and the total currency value of the Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 rupee notes in the market stands at 14.2 lakh crore.

In a related LocalCircles poll, 28 per cent said that they were yet to deposit their old currency. If the poll results were to be applied to the total outstanding currency, the projected number may get close to Rs 14.5 lakh crore.

If this were to come true, it may indicate that the entire black money in the system has been laundered thereby raising question on the effectiveness of the demonetisation scheme as a mechanism to fight black money, according to the LocalCircles report.

Over 60,000 LocalCircles members in the fight corruption circle have given inputs on what steps must be undertaken to address laundering and to ensure that those who have laundered the money get caught.

Citizens have suggested a scrutiny of accounts of various constituents in the farm supply chain, back-dated sales of jewellers and property registration transactions.

Suggestions have also been made to review share assignments in companies in the November 16 to March 17 period when there is no corresponding e-transfer/cheque transaction.

Citizens also said that last minute travel during the pre-demonetisation week, phone logs of bank managers and practicing chartered accountants be reviewed.