New Delhi, Dec 6 : The Delhi High Court on Wednesday suggested to the Centre and the Reserve Bank of India to examine the issuance of new Rs 50 currency notes for the benefit of visually impaired persons.
The court told the central government and the RBI to reconsider the issue by getting views from visually impaired persons and experts and to submit its view on the matter at the January 31 hearing.
"Even we have found that it is difficult for the visually impaired persons to identify the currency denomination due to change in size of certain notes," the court observed.
The authorities should be "inclusive to the needs of the visually impaired", it added.
Public Interest Litigations were filed by three lawyers, a Company Secretary and NGO All India Confederation of Blind, who sought issuance of new Rs 50 notes with specific identification mark to help visually impaired persons identify them by feeling them with their hands.
"It is very difficult for the visually impaired to identify the new notes. This act of the respondents violates their constitutional right," petitioner advocate Rohit Dandriyal told the court.
The petitioner said old Rs 50 notes had a square intaglio print that could be felt by hand and helped the visually impaired to identify the denomination, but the new notes had no such identification marks.
The RBI has kept a special feature in intaglio on all notes, except Rs 10 note. This feature is in different shapes for notes of various denominations. For Rs 20, it is a vertical rectangle, for old Rs 50 note, it is a square, and a triangle or circle for Rs 100 notes.
The new Rs 50 notes don't have features helpful for the visually impaired, like other banknotes of Rs 2,000, Rs 500, Rs 200 and Rs 100, the petition said.
The High Court had earlier declined to stay the printing and circulation of the new Rs 50 notes, issued on August 18.