Time and again rumours appear in social media that banks will not accept currency notes with scribbling on them. RBI has been giving denial statements of having issued such notifications. In fact dismissing the above types of romours, RBI Governor on December 15, 2015 had issued a statement in an audio message assuring members of public that they can freely accept scribbled currency notes. In his statement, the Governor said that “As I understand, one of the topics trending on Whatsapp is the statement that at the end of the year notes with writing will not be accepted. This is absolutely false. Those notes continue to be a legal tender.”
RBI’s Clean Note Policy stops Banks (Cashiers) from writing on the notes and stapling them. Although undesirable, it does not mean that small writing on currency note makes the note illegal. Since inscription or scribbling on any part of the banknote renders them unfit for reissue, such notes are treated as soiled bank notes and RBI will not recirculate such notes.
However, any note with slogans and message of a political nature written across it ceases to be a legal tender and the claim on such a note may be rejected under Rule 6(3) (iii) of Reserve Bank of India (Note Refund) Rules, 2009. Likewise, notes which are disfigured may also be rejected under Rule 6(3) (ii) of Reserve Bank of India (Note Refund) Rules, 2009.