Three experts answer some persisting questions about the government’s 2016 demonetisation drive.
Q. After two years of demonetisation, what are the lessons for India and for other developing nations? How successful has the move been?
The most important lesson is that an important measure like this should have been brought in only after detailed and careful planning. This was not really done. It was very sudden. Also, it made no sense to demonetise Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes while, at the same time, introducing a Rs 2,000 note. They had sought to achieve many things through the measure: cutting down on black money; reducing corruption; cracking down on the amount of money flowing into terrorism; improving the digital basis for India, in other words, laying the foundation for a ‘cashless’ economy. But, for all these things to happen, we needed a well-thought plan. A lot of things needed to be done in advance—each objective had to be taken individually.