Demonetization in India – What can you do overseas?

On 8-Nov-2016, Govt. of India took a historic action to fight against black money, counterfeit currency and corruption and demonetized high denomination currency notes of 500 and 1000 Indian Rupee. The rule came in action without any prior intimation and from midnight on the announcement day, all these notes were banned for use other than for specified usage.

While this affected people in India to a great extent, the Indians residing abroad were also not unaffected. Whoever has cash money in denominations of 500 and 1000 INR now has to deposit them or get them exchanged.

In this blog, I’ll try to consolidate the actions the Indians residing overseas can take for demonetized notes in their possession.

Deposit in bank account in India by 31-Dec-2016 in self

If you are planning to visit India before 31-Dec-2016, you can deposit it in your bank account. You can also get it exchanged for up to 2000 INR with your valid ID proof at your bank.

Authorize someone to deposit your money in India by 31-Dec-2016

If you have some of the banned notes in India, you can authorize someone with an authority letter in writing and a valid ID proof. They can deposit the money on your behalf by 31-Dec-2016.

Deposit in NRO account by 31-Dec-2016

You can also deposit the demonetized currency notes in your NRO account overseas by 31-Dec-2016. However, if you hold only an NRE account, you can not deposit banned notes in it.

Deposit in designated RBI offices by 31-Mar-2017

If you do not have any plans to visit India by 31-Dec-2016, you still have 3 more months to deposit banned notes. You can visit the designated RBI offices in India by 31-Mar-2017 along with valid ID proof and deposit your money.

Foreign travellers in India can get foreign exchange up to INR 5000 till 24-Nov-2016

If you are a foreigner travelling in India and you have purchased Indian currency, you can purchase foreign exchange equivalent to ₹5000 using banned notes at airport exchange counters till November 24, 2016, provided you present proof of purchasing these notes.

P.S. – If you deposit cash above 50,000 INR in your NRO account overseas or in India, banks would need your PAN details.

If you have very small amount of these banned currency notes i.e. 2-3 notes of 500 or 1000 INR, you can also request your friends or relatives travelling to India to get those deposited in their account and you can get exchanged notes from them. The limit of INR that can be carried by an Indian abroad is INR 25000 per person.

Disclaimer – The above information holds true to to the best of my knowledge as of date. However, Govt. of India may revise the associated dates and norms which might not be updated here. So, please check RBI website for confirmation.