India decides to cast ‘chavanni’ to history


New Delhi: It had in any case lost whatever little value it had – now the Indian government has decided to withdraw it from circulation altogether. Come June 30, and the 25 paise coins will cease to be legal tender in the country. The days of ‘chavanni will truly be over.

Support TwoCircles

“The minimum denomination coin acceptable for transaction will be 50 paise from that date,” the Finance Ministry said in a statement Thursday.

From June 30, 2011, together with 25 paise coins, all other coins of lesser denomination – one paisa, two paise, three paise, five paise, ten paise and 20 paise — also “will not be accepted in transactions”, it said.

Most of these coins vanished a long while ago as the government found the cost of minting them many times more than their face value.

From June 30, 2011, these coins will cease to be legal tender for payment as well as on account. The procedure for call-in will be notified separately by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), the ministry said.

It added: “Also, in accounting, i.e. the entries in books of accounts, pricing of products/services/taxes shall also be rounded off to 50 paise or whole rupee from that date.”

A 50 paise coin equals around one US cent.

For 88-year-old P. Ramasubramanian, the news evoked nostalgia.

“We used to call it ‘char anna’ or ‘four annas’. In 1940s you could run your household for a day with two of these,” Ramasubramanian told IANS.

“During our school days, we used to get 25 paise as our pocket money. Now it has no value. Things have changed so much,” said 62-year-old Akhil Bagga.