Currency Press Releases

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Date : Nov 18, 2004
President of India inaugurates RBI Monetary Museum


The President of India, Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, today inaugurated the Reserve Bank of India’s Monetary Museum. The first of its kind in India, the museum is located on the ground floor of Amar Building, P.M.Road, Fort, Mumbai. Dr. Y.V.Reddy, Governor, Reserve Bank of India showed the President around the Museum.

Giving his comments, the President noted in the visitors' book, "It is a beautiful idea and well presented. Hearty Congratulations". Among the dignitaries present were Shri Ratan Tata and Dr. Ashok Ganguly, both members on the Central Board of Directors of the Reserve Bank of India. Appreciating the efforts of the Reserve Bank in bringing the monetary heritage of the country closer to the people, Shri Ratan Tata recorded in the visitors' book that the Monetary Museum is "A very impressive display, beautifully exhibited. A great addition to the city". Dr. Ganguly also found the Monetary Museum "A wonderful historic journey of money".

As the central bank of the country, the Reserve Bank of India is the custodian of the country’s monetary heritage. The RBI Monetary Museum aims at documenting, preserving and presenting India’s monetary heritage to the public. The Museum is expected, over time, to serve as the focal point for the Reserve Bank’s public education and outreach programmes. The Museum will be open to public from January 2005.

On display are exhibits of money ranging from neolithic axes to stored value cards. The displays are divided into three main galleries. The first gallery introduces the visitor to concepts, ideas and curiosities relating to money, including, how has money evolved from barter to the present and the shapes and sizes it has assumed over the years. On display are some of the smallest coins in the world, the nomenclatures they have assumed down the ages, their metals, alloys, etc.

The second section traces the evolution of coins from the 6th century BC to the present with exhibits of representative coinage along with a chronology of events.

How did the transition take place from coins to bank notes? How did banking evolve? These questions are addressed in the third section on bank notes. This section, along with a tour of indigenous banking, hundies and other financial instruments, gives a glimpse of the early bank notes in India which evolved in the late 18th - early 19th century down to the present. The visitor is introduced briefly to how the demand and supply of currency is managed in the country and the security features of bank notes. It also gives the visitors a glimpse of the functions of the Reserve Bank of India.

For children, the Museum also has interactive information kiosks that have games by playing which they can learn various aspects of currency and coins. The kiosks also give more details about the displays in the Museum.



Press Release: 2004-05/526

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