New Delhi: The Intelligence Bureau and National Investigation Agency cautioned the Centre that Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) successfully managed to copy at least 8 to 10 security features of the Rs 2,000 new currency note that were introduced in November after demonetisation drive. One of the objectives of the demonetisation was to crackdown on fake currency, most of which was in Rs 500 denomination.
In a recently classified note to the Centre, details of which have been accessed by this newspaper, the agencies have stated that “the ISI and its operatives, however, have still not been able to get hold of fine quality of paper used for printing the new currency notes. The government must ensure and take immediate preventive measures to ensure that the ISI or its operatives are not able to get the paper from those who supply this to the Indian printing press or mint.’’
The NIA, in a joint operation with the BSF earlier this week, had seized high-quality Rs 2,000 notes from Malda area near the border that were being smuggled in from Bangladesh. Sources said the notes were of “very high quality” while the miscreants had even managed to incorporate “a number of safety features, although the quality of the paper was not very good.’’
It was against this backdrop, sources said, that the agencies cautioned the government to ensure that proper safety measures are in place so that the ISI operatives are not able to source the same quality of paper used in India.
ISI mint likely on Karachi outskirts
Top intelligence sources claimed that in the past also the ISI and some members of the Dawood Ibrahim gang have made attempts to procure ink, paper and machinery from the form the same source that was at some point in time also supplying it to the Indian printing press.
“Now that there has been a case where subversive elements have managed to copy the safety features in Rs 2,000 notes and would be trying for the new Rs 500 notes also. We just want all government agencies to make their security arrangements absolutely foolproof to ensure that the ISI or its associates don’t succeed this time around,” a senior intelligence official said.
Both the IB and the NIA have also stated that ISI already has set up a state-of-the-art printing facility on the outskirts of Karachi where members of the D-company have also been roped in.
“We suspect the Karachi facility would surely be used for printing the fake new Indian currency and ISI has also roped in the Dawood gang for it,'' the official added.
These agencies also suspect that the fake notes being routed through the porous Bangladesh border were also sourced from the Karachi press considering the good quality of notes.