Nine months after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the demonetisation Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes, it is clear that his government has not had one single, consistent reason for conducting the notebandi exercise.
Nepalis had been verbally promised they would be able to exchange Rs 4,500 in old notes each, but no official decision has been sent yet on how this is to be done.
Despite farmers citing demonetisation as one of the chief causes for their distress and protests, the government is still projecting it as an excellent move.
Though businesses in the capital were negatively affected by demonetisation, a survey showed, many continue to see the move as positive.
The moving story behind why a refugee family from Afghanistan has been forced to sleep on the roads of Delhi.
A survey of daily wage labourers in Ranchi and surrounding rural areas shows that demonetisation was more than a short-lived shock for the informal sector.
Rishikesh, a popular tourist destination, has been hard hit by demonetisation. But political affiliations mean people aren’t willing to criticise the move, despite the impact on their livelihoods.
While Arun Jaitley talks of increased tax collection, banks are battling historically-low credit growth and small and medium businesses are staring at drastically decreased revenues.
Petrol pump owners are protesting the imposition of a 1% service fee on all cashless transactions, saying they will lose twice of what they make in profits.
The latest rules create a window for NRIs and Indians who travel abroad to change their last 500 and 1000 notes, but what about everyone else?
Institutional feebleness and political imperfections have given the prime minister the upper hand.
A survey conducted in Munirka village, Vasant Vihar’s Kusumpur Pahadi slum, Trilokpuri and Noor Nagar’s Pahadi slum shows that casual labourers and small shop owners have been the hardest hit by demonetisation.
Vegetable sellers, petty traders, autowallas continue to suffer with little hope of recovery after their businesses shrunk by nearly a half after demonetisation.
In the region marked by class and caste inequalities, where a cashless economy is a distant dream, there is some doubtful support for Modi’s move, but mostly concrete hostility.
This week’s column will consider the demonetised subaltern to see if they can speak.