New Delhi: As the government cracked down on black money, India’s corporate sector wholeheartedly gave its thumbs up to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s initiative to demonetise high value currency notes in the country.
Here is what India Inc. leaders said: Sunil Bharti Mittal, founder and Chairman, Bharti Enterprises:
This is a very thoughtful and bold move by the Prime Minister, which will reinforce the faith of the people in the ideas of transparency and governance. This step will not only clean up the scourge of parallel economy, but will also provide a major fillip to the nation’s transition into a cashless digital economy. This is the time for the business and people of the country to rejoice the transformational initiative by the government, rather than worry about the short-term inconvenience that they may face.
Ashok P. Hinduja, Chairman, Hinduja Group of Companies (India):
Coupled with goods and services tax and its multiple audit trails, this demonetising of high value Indian currency notes is the masterstroke by PM Modi, which will be long remembered as the biggest reform ever in independent India. It deals two body blows – one, to the counterfeit currency racket, which we have been hearing for long is used for anti-national activities and two, right at the heart of parallel economy and eventually, political funding, which is the root cause of black money.
Somasundaram PR, Managing Director, India, World Gold Council:
The act of demonetising high value currency notes by the government of India is a decisive and welcome step to curb tax evasion and improve compliance — an important milestone in the journey towards the vision of becoming a cashless economy. This will be transformative for gold as this has the potential to squeeze out the unofficial trade, and drive greater transparency across.
Porush Singh, Country Corporate Officer, India and Division President, South Asia, Mastercard:
Mastercard welcomes and supports Prime Minister Modi’s announcement regarding the ban on high value currency notes as it fundamentally addresses the underlying ‘cash engine’ that drives the shadow economy. It will enable further growth in the Indian economy by encouraging cashless transactions and reducing crime rate.
T.R. Ramachandran, Group Country Manager, India & South Asia, VISA:
We welcome this bold move by the government towards eliminating black money and accelerating India towards a cashless economy. This is one of the most significant steps that we have seen so far towards India becoming a cashless economy.
Naveen Surya, Chairman, Payment Council of India and MD, ItzCash:
Addressing it as a wake-up call, having witnessed an event of this nature and scale, people will now be more inclined to transformative changes. Adaption to digital cash will now find a sweet spot among public at large as a precursor to counter similar occasions while they leverage the immense convenience and seamless interoperability it offers.
Ashish Sarin, CEO, Alpha Corp:
There is widespread corruption in the system and the government had to take stern measures to weed out corruption from the grassroots level. Demonetisation of Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 notes will be instrumental in eradicating black money out from the transactions and strengthen the banking channel as moneys will get in to the banking system.
Dhruv Agarwala, CEO, PropTiger.com and makaan.com:
We don’t see an immediate fall in land prices, but transactions will certainly freeze. The overall decline in land prices will have a cascading effect.
Shishir Baijal, Chairman and Managing Director, Knight Frank India:
The broader effects of this move will help the sector (real estate) grow in the long run. Firstly, it will create a level playing field amongst all stake holders in the sector. Institutional funding to developers which till present day came with a higher risk weightage is bound to see some softening with the increased transparency.
Sathvik Vishwanath, co-founder and CEO, Unocoin:
The intentions are good but very difficult to achieve. If going cashless is the only way forward, certainly the bitcoin which is borderless, trustless and transparent currency makes more sense.
Manavjeet Singh, founder and CEO, Rubique:
This is a promising move made by the government towards cashless economy. This will boost innovation in the nascent electronic payment industry. Without doubt, this will bring down frauds and thefts and costs of printing cash. A great blow to black money. If executed well, the costs of doing transactions between buyers and sellers will lower significantly by 2019.
Ranjit Punja, co-founder and CEO, Creditmantri:
Sweeping step taken by the PM, but this should have a positive impact in curtailing black money and reducing corruption. Likely to cause some temporary hardship, and with the introduction of the Rs 2,000 note, along with the security and tracking features, currency will be used as intended.
Sanjay Sethi, co-founder and CEO, Shopclues:
This is a master stroke by the BJP government and a very bold move indeed. Even though this is not the first time such a move has been made by a sitting government, what is significant this time is that it is built on the JAM trinity – Jandhan, Aadhar and Mobile – making it hard for the country to regress.
Vineet Relia, Managing Director, SARE Homes:
This is a very bold move taken by the government and we truly support the decision of moving towards cash less economy. The move will have a major impact in secondary sales especially in the high value segment.
Anshuman Magazine, Chairman, India & South East Asia, CBRE:
It is a bold move. While it may cause some pain in the short-term, the long-term outlook for the industry looks positive. It certainly helps that the real estate industry has already moved towards transparency in its operations.
Anwar Shirpurwala, Executive Director, MAIT:
The move taken by the government clearly indicates that we will be depending more and more on the ICT. This move has been possible because of the availability of technology and multiple means of financial transaction.