News & Events
Story behind the face of Mahatma Gandhi’s face on currency note
- February 5, 2021
- Posted by: elanwp
- Category: Uncategorized
I know we all have this question in our minds Why Mahatma Gandhi Photo on Indian Currency that is why you are here. Every year October 2nd, we Indians celebrate the birthday of the father of the nation Mahatma Gandhi. Mahatma Gandhi had a huge impact on history and our ethers as a nation. His influence is so great that till date we see his face every day on our currency but have any of you ever wondered why only Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi and not any other Indian personality features on our currency notes? Most 90’s Kids may not even remember this but before 1996 not all rupee notes had Gandhi’s famous Photo on them.
Before the Reserve Bank of India issued the Mahatma Gandhi series of notes the Indian rupees used to be adorned with the Ashoka Stumb and other symbols and achievement representing our country.Only 500 rupees note issued in 1987 had his photo printed on it along with the Dandi march on the riverside. The Mahatma Gandhi series released in faces from 1996 November 2000. The RBI along with the Indian government decides the look and feel of the Indian currency and why no official statement issued by the Mahatma represents the Indian Rupee. Former RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan said this at an event back in 2014, there are so many great Indians but of course, he is the father of the nation and he stands Head and Shoulders above everyone. There are many great Indian that we can get all the notes from but I sense that anybody else would be controversial there.
Where did the printed Photo of Mahatma Gandhi on Indian notes come from?
It is come to know that this photo was taken in the year the ’90s and it is the original one, this photo was taken at that time when MG visited the house of Lord Frederick Pethick Lawrence.
This picture clearly stands to show at that moment Mahatma Gandhi was actually looking at somebody by delivering a smile. Well, one must admit it came real good though (Wink!) and therefore this exact image became the face on India’s currency notes. If you see; Gandhi’s smiling photograph is been cropped and taken smartly.
In which year was Indian Currency released with Mahatma Gandhi’s photo on it?
In October 1987, `500, the banknote was introduced in October 1987 with the portrait of Mahatma Gandhi and the Ashoka Pillar watermark. The Reserve Bank has introduced banknotes in the Mahatma Gandhi Series since 1996. The banknotes in MG Series – 1996 were issued in the denominations of ` 5, (introduced in November 2001) ` 10 (June 1996), ` 20 (August 2001), ` 50 (March 1997), `100 (June 1996), ` 500 (October 1997) and `1000 (November 2000). All the banknotes of this series bear the portrait of Mahatma Gandhi on the obverse (front) side, in place of the symbol of Lion Capital of Ashoka Pillar, which has also been retained and shifted to the left side next to the watermark window. This means that these banknotes contain Mahatma Gandhi watermark as well as Mahatma Gandhi’s portrait.
Back in 2014, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in a written reply to the Lok Sabha had said, “A Reserve Bank of India (RBI) panel has decided against the inclusion of any other national leader’s image on banknotes saying that no other personality could better represent the ethos of the country than Mahatma Gandhi.” The debate saw a lot of individuals pouring in their wild guesses; while some hinted that the worldwide acclamation for the film ‘Gandhi’ is the reason behind it, a few others cited that due to the rich diversity of the country, Gandhiji was picked as the symbolism.
It was decided that as non-humans symbols like the above lead to such regional controversies, it would be better that the national currency bore an image that would be well-respected by the nation as a whole. This particular moment was captured by an unknown photographer, back in 1946; one year from India’s Independence. Much later the face of Mahatma Gandhi was cropped and featured on the present Indian Currency.