image courtesy : Hindustan Times

A call centre executive, Rohit Kumar who had gone to withdraw cash from a State Bank of India ATM in Sangam Vihar was in for a shock when the Rs 500 and Rs 2,000 notes dispensed from the machine read “Children Bank of India” in English and “Bharatiya Manoranjan Bank ” in Hindi.

When he informed the cops, “A Sub-Inspector from the Sangam Vihar police station reached the spot to withdraw cash from the ATM. He, too, got a fake ₹2,000 note,” said DCP (South-East) Romil Baaniya.

The police said that except the colour, the counterfeit notes bore very few similarities to a real note. For instance, Bharatiya Reserve Bank had been replaced by “Bharatiya Manoranjan Bank” on the notes, and “Children Bank” had become the guarantor instead of the Central government.

Police said they are yet to identify the people behind this. A case of manufacturing documents resembling currency notes, using forged or counterfeit notes and of cheating has been registered at Sangam Vihar police station under IPC sections 489-b, 489-e and 420. An SBI spokesman has said they will be sending a team to investigate the matter.

SBI, meanwhile, said that all its currency chests have a very robust system to monitor the quality of notes. All notes received and to be dispensed by the bank, either through its ATMs or its branches, are processed through the latest, state-of-the-art “note-sorting machines”. These machines are equipped with the templates of all legal tender in the country and any note not conforming to the security features is separated as “suspect note” for further manual scrutiny. No fake note is likely to be dispensed through the bank’s ATMs at any time, it said.

The bank said it is examining the notes in all other ATMs handled by the same custodians of the bank and replenished by the same cash replenishment agency. “As the possibility of fake notes from the bank’s ATMs is very remote, the bank suspects the involvement of some miscreants with mischievous intent. However, further investigations are underway,” a statement by SBI said.

Police say that they suspect the role of some delivery van personnel who might have replaced the original notes with the fakes while loading the ATM.