KATHMANDU: The Nepal government has declared the use of Indian currency notes of Rs 2000, 500 and 200 denominations illegal in the country. The decision was taken at the last Cabinet meeting, as announced by the Minister of Information Gokul Baskota. The move will definitely affect middle and low-income Indian tourists. When the Indian government introduced the new notes in 2016, following demonetisation, the Nepal government did not make any announcement on the status of the new notes.
“The government has decided not to use, carry and keep the Indian bills of 200, 500 and 2000 denominations. The government will soon issue a formal notice in this matter,” Baskota said. The decision will adversely affect Nepalese labourers working in India as well as Indian tourists visiting Nepal. The decision comes as the Nepal government is making preparations to celebrate 2020 as the ‘Visit Nepal Year’. Estimates indicate that at least 2 million people will visit Nepal in 2020, the bulk of them from India.
Nepal allows the use of the Indian rupee in its economy, and was impacted by the Narendra Modi-led government’s decision to scrap Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes in November 2016. Nepal Premier K P Sharma Oli said earlier this year that demonetisation hurt the Nepalese people and added that he would raise the matter with Indian leaders. People have been using the new Indian currency in Nepal for nearly two years now.