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Thursday, 29 December 2011




Historical Reference:

1)      Sir C.D. Deshmukh (Reserve Bank of India –RBI Governor from 11.08.1943 to 30.06.1949) was the only Governor of RBI who served during the British India Rule as well as during Post-Independence India. 
My sister Raka has contributed an image of a ten-rupee Note from her collection, which was issued with his signatures during the British period, for this Post.

The front of this Note has the portrait of George VI facing front. The serial number of the Note is below the window displaying his portrait and is mentioned at one place only (unlike present day issues). The signature of RBI Governor C.D.Deshmukh is given below the white water-mark window. Notice that the language mentioned on this side of the Note is English only. The numeral “10” figures prominently on both the top left and right hand corners of the Note. The Governor’s undertaking “to pay the bearer the sum of TEN RUPEES on demand at any office of issue” is mentioned in five lines, below which is mentioned “10 Rupees” in two places. In 1968 the words “on demand” were removed from the RBI Governor’s promise and these words are not found on present day issues. Various colours are found on this Note (Violet, Red, Brown, Orange and Green) along with a rudimentary security thread. The size of the Note was 80 x 140 mm (approx.)

The back/reverse of the above Note shows 7 Regional Languages in the Languages Panel. The main language is entirely English at the back too. The numeral “10” appears on the top left and right hand sides. The words “Rupees ten” and “Ten Rupees” appear on the bottom left and right hand sides respectively. A picture of a two-masted, three-sail cargo-laden boat/dhow (defined as a native Arab/Indian sailing vessel used on the Arabian Sea, generally with a single mast capable of carrying 100 to 200 tons of cargo), sailing ahead, with mountains to the left and clouds above is depicted in the centre. This Note was in circulation, in Post-Independence India as well, till it ceased to be legal tender in October 1957.The value of this Note in mint condition would be about Rs.2500/- to about Rs.10000/-.
 The undernoted images are of a ten rupee Banknote issued with the front-facing image of George VI, signed by C.D. Deshmukh, from the collection of Jayant Biswas, a leading numismatist and currency collector based in Pune.

2)  Post Indian Independence, the first ten rupee Independent India Note was issued under C.D.Deshmukh’s signature as well. A large image of the Asoka Lion Capital (the official symbol of Sovereignty of the Government of Independent India, replaced the portrait of George VI. The language on this Note was again English only, except for the Indian languages depicted on the Languages Panel at the back. Also, the sailing boat/dhow image was continued as in the earlier ten rupee notes. This note is much sought after by collectors and, in mint condition, can fetch a seller from somewhere between Rs.20000/- to Rs.40000/-.

The same design was continued during the tenure of Sir B.Rama Rau (RBI Governor from 01.07.1949 to 14.01.1957 during the early pat of his tenure, in January 1950. Later, in August 1951, the design was altered to include Hindi on the front/face of the Note but only to mention the denomination of the Note “Dus Rupiya” (Ten Rupee). However, the Hindi translation was incorrect and was corrected in later notes issued in April 1953, to read as “Dus Rupiye” (Ten Rupees) instead of “Rupiya”.
Given below is an image of a ten Rupee Note issued during Sir B. Rama Rau’s tenure, in my collection, with the incorrect Hindi spelling “Dus Rupiya” indicating that the vintage of this Note is around 1952/1953 (it is issued with an “N” Prefix).Also, notice that the serial number of the Note is mentioned in two places on the bottom, on either side of the RBI Governor’s signatures.

The undernoted image is that of the back/reverse of the above Note continuing with the image of the three sail sailing boat and 7 Regional Indian languages. The “Ten Rupees” in English shown on the right hand side of the Note issued during the British period, has been replaced by “ Dus Rupiya”, in Hindi (again, incorrect Spelling) which was corrected in later Notes to “Rupiye”. 

The design with the corrected Hindi spelling was continued during the tenures of H.V.R.Iyengar (RBI Governor from 01.03.1957 to 28.02.1962) and P.C.Bhattacharya (RBI Governor from 01.03.1962 to 30.06.1967). Also, the number of Regional languages at the back were raised to 13.

The size of these Notes was 83 x 146 mm. The value of these Notes ranges between Rs.10000/- (for earlier issues) to about Rs.1500/- for later issues.

      3) Also, during P.C. Bhattacharya’s tenure a much smaller ten rupee Note was issued with an     ornamental numeral “10”. The size of this Note was 63 mm x 137 mm. The Lion capital and the white water mark window were also proportionately reduced in size.

             4) The same design was continued during the tenure of L.K. Jha. (RBI Governor from 01.07.1957 to 03.05.1970). Another new design was introduced in 1968, during his tenure, wherein, as mentioned above, the words “on demand” were removed from the Governor’s promise to pay a sum of ten rupees to the bearer. Also, for the first time, the Governor’s promise to pay the bearer a sum of ten rupees appeared in Hindi on the right hand side of the prominent white numeral “10” in the middle of the front side of the Note. Another addition was that, below the “Reserve Bank of India” in English on the front side, the words “Bhartiya Reserve Bank “were mentioned in Hindi for the first time on this Note. Also, the RBI Governor’s signatures appeared in Hindi for the first time. On the back of the Note, the sailing boat design was continued.

Also, when the country was celebrating the birth centenary of Mahatma Gandhi in 1969, a ten rupee note with Mahatma Gandhi’s portrait on the back was also issued in 1969 during L.K.Jha’s tenure. The same design was carried on ten rupee notes issued during the tenure of B.N.Adarkar (RBI Governor from 04.05.1970 to 15.06.1970). However, during the tenure of S. Jagannathan (RBI Governor from 16.06.1970 to 19.05.1975, the three-sail boat/dhow was found on the ten rupee note issues, on the back of the Note.

Given above is the front side image of a ten rupee Note issued under S. Jagannathan’s signature with an “A” Inset. (Notice the faint “A” alphabet behind the letter 2 in the serial number of the Note. Also notice the RBI Governor’s signatures in both Hindi and English.

On the back of the Note, notice that there are  13 Regional languages in the Languages panel along with the sailing boat design which is being continued from the British India times.
(The value of the Note given above in mint condition would be about Rs.100/- to Rs.300/- for collectors).
This design was continued during the tenures of K.R.Puri (RBI Governor from 20.08.1975 to 21.05.1977), M.Narasimhan 02.05.1977 to 30.11.1977) Dr.I.G.Patel (01.12.1977 to 15.09.1982), Manmohan Singh (16.09.1982 to 14.01.1985), Amitav Ghosh (15.01.1985 to 04.02.1985), R.N. Malhotra (04.02.1985 to 22.12.1990) and S. Venkitaramanan (RBI Governor from 22.12.1990 to 21.12.1992).

A new design Note with a larger Lion Capital on the face and two peacocks, birds, lotus, deer and horse at the back was, also issued during the tenures of S.Jagannathan, K.R. Puri, and M. Narasimhan. I.G. Patel, Manmohan Singh and R.N. Malhotra.

Another design was introduced at the back of the ten rupee Note during S.Venkitaramanan’s tenure when the Shalimar Gardens replaced the peacocks The water-mark window on this Note looked like a “D”.  An image of one such Note issued with a “D” shaped water-mark window is given above. Also notice that in this Note, “Bhartiya Reserve Bank” in Hindi is placed above the “Reserve Bank of India” in English, as is the Central Government’s Guarantee. Also, the RBI Governor’s promise to pay the sum of ten rupees to the bearer is mentioned in Hindi first (on the left hand side) and then in English (on the right hand side). This note is issued with a “Plain Inset” in the background of the serial number.

This note is also issued during S.Venkitaramanan’s tenure, but with an “A” Inset. Ten rupee notes were also issued with this design during his tenure with “Plain Inset”.

The Shalimar Gardens are pictured on the back of both the above notes. Also, notice that the watermark “D” is more elongated on the back than at the front of the Note. No year of issue is mentioned at the back of this Note. The year of issue is mentioned at the back of ten rupee Notes from 2006 onwards only.

             This design notes were, also, issued during RBI Governor C.Rangarajan’s tenure (22.12.1992-22.11.1997.         

The image of a ten rupee note issued during Dr.C.Rangarajan’s tenure with an”A” Inset in the serial number.

This ten rupee note was issued during Dr.Rangarajan’s tenure with a “B” Inset.

A ten rupee note issued with a “C” Inset under Dr. Rangarajan’s signatures.

A ten rupee note issued with a “D” Inset during Dr. Rangarajan’s tenure. (Ten rupee Notes were also issued with “E” Insets during his tenure with the same design).

The "Diwan-i-Khas" of the Shalimar Gardens are pictured on the back of all the above notes. Also, notice that the watermark “D” is more elongated on the back than at the front of the Note. No year of issue is mentioned at the back of this Note.

During Dr. Rangarajan’s tenure, the design on the ten rupee notes was changed and the large Lion Capital of Emperor Asoka / symbol of Sovereignty of the Indian Government was replaced by a portrait of M.K. Gandhi (short for Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, or Mahatma Gandhi, the Father of the Indian Nation)on the right hand side window. The much smaller Lion Capital moved to the bottom left hand side of the note. His name was spelt as “Mo.Ka.Gandhi” in Hindi and “M.K.Gandhi” in English below his portrait.  An ornamental numeral “10” replaced the plain white-coloured numeral “10” in the centre; a stylized white elongated D-shaped water-mark window on the left hand side now contained a Mahatma Gandhi portrait in the water-mark window, as well. This Note which is in a soiled condition has been issued with an “M” Inset in its serial number.

On the back of the Note, floral motifs and the figures of a Rhinoceros, Bengal Tiger and an Indian Elephant, all facing in different directions replaced the earlier design of the Shalimar Gardens. Also, the number of Regional Indian Languages on the Languages Panel on the left was raised to 15. The numeral “10” appears at three places – top left, top right and bottom left. The denomination of the note “TEN RUPEES” appears in words on the bottom right. (Such notes were also, issued during Dr. Rangarajan’s tenure with L, R and Plain Insets). 

(The value of all these notes issued during Dr. Rangarajan’s tenure, in mint condition, could be about Rs.100/- for earlier issues to about Rs.50/- for later ones, for collectors. Sometimes, one may still come across these notes in circulation in relatively good condition, but their numbers are dwindling fast).

This design was also continued during the tenure of Dr.Bimal Jalan (RBI Governor from 22.11.1997 to 06.09.2003), Dr. Y.V.Reddy (RBI Governor from 06.09.2003 to 05.09.2008) and is carried on present day issues under the signatures of Dr. D.Subbarao (RBI Governor 06.09.2008 onwards).

The front of a Note issued in 2007, under Dr. Y.V.Reddy’s signatures with an “A” Inset in its serial number. Also the name of M.K.Gandhi has now been changed to read as “Mahatma Gandhi” in both Hindi and English. “A” Inset Notes were also issued under Dr. Reddy’s signatures, with no year mentioned on the back (i.e. prior to 2006), in 2006 and 2008.

The front of a Note issued in 2007, under Dr. Y.V.Reddy’s signatures with an “M” Inset in its serial number.   “M” Inset Notes were also issued under Dr. Reddy’s signatures in 2008.

 The front of a Note issued in 2006, under Dr. Y.V.Reddy’s signatures with an “L” Inset in its serial number. “L” Inset Notes were also issued under Dr. Reddy’s signatures in 2007.

Ten rupee Notes were also issued with Plain, R and S Insets in the serial numbers during Dr. Reddy’s tenure.

A specimen image of the back of all the above notes issued with the same design as that issued during Dr.Rangarajan’s tenure.
The value of these Notes in mint condition would range from about Rs.25/- to Rs.50/- for the earlier issues and the type of Insets, gradually reducing to around face value for the later ones, depending on the collector’s interest.

I have in my collection similar design Notes were issued during Dr.D.Subbarao’s tenure with Plain Inset (2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011), “A” Inset (2009 and2010), “L” Inset ( 2009 and 2010), “M” Inset (2010), “R” Inset notes (2009 and 2010), “N” Inset Notes (2011), “S” Inset notes (2010 and 2011) and  “B” Inset Notes ( 2011).

Note issued with a PLain inset.

Note issued with an "A" Inset.

Note issued with an "L" Inset.

Note issued with an "M" Inset.

Note issued with an "R" Inset.

Note issued with an "N" Inset.

Note issued with an "S" Inset.

Note issued with a "B" Inset.

Back of the Note issued with "B" Inset in 2011. It is similar to the back of all the Notes depicted above.
The value of 10 rupee notes issued during Dr. Subbarao’s tenure ranges from about Rs.25/- toRs.50/- for earlier issues in mint condition(and the type of Insets), to face value for the later ones, depending on the Collector’s interest and requirement.

Star series Notes:
Whenever defective notes are printed, particularly from Rs.10/- to Rs.100/- denominations, the Security Printing Presses have adopted a “Star” series numbering system for replacement of these defectively printed Notes. The numbering on the replacement Notes is exactly like the normally printed ones, but have an additional feature i.e. a “STAR” (*) is added in the serial number in the space between the prefix and the number. The main significance of these notes, besides the “STAR” is that, although, these notes would be issued in packets of 100 each, these bank notes would not be serially numbered. To enable easy identification, the bands on these packets will clearly indicate that the packet contains star-series banknotes. The notation on the band of such note packets normally is “contains non-serially numbered notes with * in the number panel”, both in Hindi and English.

The above is an image of a ten rupee note containing a “star” * in the number panel, issued in 2010 with an “M” Inset, collected for me from general circulation by Krishna.

 Another ten rupee note picked up by me at the Food Court of a leading Shopping Mall in my area, exhibiting the "star" * in the number panel with a "P" Inset , again issued in 2010.

The value of such notes in mint condition increases substantially from say, about 7-10 times the face value, to about a few thousands of rupees , depending on its value for collectors and the serial number it contains/ Inset etc.

Recently, the Reserve Bank of India in its periodical design changes has introduced new Currency Notes in the denominations of Rs.1000/-, Rs.500/-, Rs.100/- and Rs.10/-. The Old design on the currently circulating Mahatma Gandhi  Notes has been retained in the new series, but the new “Rupee symbol” has been introduced in two places on the front side just before the denomination of the currency note as well as , before two denomination numerals on the top of the back of the Notes.
 I happened to acquire two five hundred notes with the rupee symbol and ten one hundred rupee notes from a Bank ATM near my residence on the 01.01.2012 which had placed these new design notes in their ATM as a “New Year’s Gift” to customers. I happened to be the first one to receive these notes. Later on, while passing through the same area, I saw that the ATM withdrawal line had really built up to a serpentine queue and the ATM cash was being reloaded which meant that the message to collect the new design notes had spread fast!!
Also, I acquired two ten rupee Notes from a provision shop which had no idea that the ‘00E” prefix meant that these were close to being the very first few issues.

Notice that the rupee symbol appears before the numeral “10” on the upper side of this Note.

Notice that the Rupee symbol appears before the numeral “10”  in two places on the top of this Note and the symbol does not appear before the numeral “10” on the lower/bottom side.

Posted on 24.12.13: 

Raghuram Govinda Rajan has taken over from Dr. D.SubbaRao as Reserve Bank of India Governor wef 04.09.2013. It was announced by RBI that ten rupee Banknotes signed by him will be released in October 2013, however, these Banknotes bearing his signatures got released for general circulation in November 2013. I had been on the lookout for acquiring one of these early releases. My opportunity came today when I obtained the undernoted Banknote today from  my brother-in-law Mr. Dipak Mukherjee who had got this Banknote in general circulation. With rumours afloat in Numismatic/currency collectors circles that with the doubling of minting capacity of the Mumbai mint shortly, Rupees ten Banknotes may replace the ten rupee Banknotes, if this is indeed so, then, these will be the ast few issues signed by any RBI Governor.

Front of the Banknote bearing Raghuram G. Rajan's signatures

Back of the above Banknote showing the year of issue as 2013.

Posted on 23.01.2014:

Reserve Bank of India has now decided to withdraw all currency notes issued prior to 2005, without specifically mentioning that these Banknotes will cease to be legal tender. From April 2014 all Banks will accept and exchange pre-2005 Banknotes. These Banknotes are easily identified by the absence of the year of printing on the Back of the Note. RBI estimates that the maximum number of fake currency Banknotes are from the period prior to 2005. From 01.07.2014, to exchange more than 10 pieces of Rs.500/- and Rs.1000/- banknotes, non-customers will have to furnish identity and address proof to the Bank Branch.  However, it is expected that later on RBI will issue a communication advising users the final date upto which Banknotes prior to 2005 will be accepted by the Bank. 

Therefore, please start examining the year of issue"at the back of the currency Notes passing through your hands, so as not to face the inconvenience of going to a Bank Branch for returning the currency issued prior to 2005.

While this is a welcome step, RBI needs to have a policy in place to take the remaining counterfeit Banknotes issued after 2005, like changing/revamping the Front and Back designs, adding more effective security features etc. so as not to put users at risk of accepting counterfeit currency Banknotes.

Posted on 03.03.2014:   

   The Reserve Bank of India has extended the date for exchanging the pre-2005 banknotes to January 01, 2015. It has also advised banks to facilitate the exchange of these notes for full value and without causing any inconvenience whatsoever to the public.
   RBI has further clarified that the public can continue to freely use these notes for any transaction and can unhesitatingly receive these notes in payment, as all such notes continue to remain legal tender till that date.

Links to other Posts on Indian Currency Notes on this blog: 

1)Did you know Series (1): Assists for identification of Currency Notes by visually challenged users. 

2)Did-you-know-series-(2)-what-is-design-or focus of the picture at the back of Currency Notes in circulation in India? 

3)Classification and Valuation of Rs.1000/- Notes 

4)Classification and Valuation of Rs.500/- Notes 

5)Classification and Valuation of Rs.100/- Notes 

6)Classification and Valuation of Rs.20/- Notes 

7)Classification and Valuation of Rs.5/- Notes 

8)Did you Know series (18): Are you carrying a Fake Rs.500/- Banknote in your Purse?: A comprehensive study.


  1. Hi, cool post. I have been thinking about this topic,so thanks for sharing. I will probably be subscribing to your blog. Keep up great writing!!!
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  2. Hi,
    This is Rohit; it’s a very impressive blog, keep up your good works.
    I also share a same interest kindly visit my blog and leave your valuable feedback.

  3. Hi Rohit,
    Thanks for your encouraging comments. Have chec ked out your blog too. Great effort!. Keep it up !!

  4. i have the ten rupee note of B.Rama Rau in its best condition if u guys are interested in buying it fr 7500 just let me know on ""

  5. Posted on 22.04.13 by a visitor to the blog:
    "I have 2007 10ru00f(*)prefix L 2009 20ru 09A(*) 2009 plain 10ru00f(*)plain 1988 1rupees coin n mint 1962 1ru big coin 1984 1ru coin h mint 1rupees note 1963 65 66 68 69 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81 2rupees coin 2004 h mint 100ru 50ru 10ru 20ru notes c rangrajan rana malhotra with out flag 50ru note k r puri 10ru paecock note k r puri. Interested collectors may contact me at mob. no. 9936669752 and email:

  6. hey guys! i m having a very old currency of two rs note its of 1951 please u have any idea of the valuation

  7. hey guys any one interested in1 rupee note of 1951 pls contact me its in mint condition u can mail me at

  8. I hav 5rs,10rs& 100rs of p.c.bhattacharya in new condition.want to sell them.can you help email

  9. sir i have one 500 rupees note, this note having M.K. GANDHI below gandhi's picture, all other notes are having MAHATMA GANDHI, IS THIS NOTE IS GENUINE NOTE SIR

  10. Hi,
    Rs.500/- notes were issued for the first time in October 1987 with M.K. Gandhi mentioned below his portrait during the tenure of RBI Governor R.N.Malhotra. Similar Notes were also issued during the tenures of S. Venkitaramanan and C.Rangarajan. However during Rangarajan's tenure, several crude/clever forgeries were discovered which led to changing the design with more security features. Still later, during Bimal Jalan's tenure, "M.K." was changed to "Mahatma". As regards the genuineness of your note, you will have to look at other security features/ printing details to determine the genuineness of your Banknote. You could send me a photo/scanned image in JPG format on my email address and I could take a look and may be able to help you out.

  11. thank you sir, for answering, i will try to scan this rs 500 rupees note and email to you as soon as possible.

  12. hi i am Rhi and i av old 1 rupee,10 ruppee note wit 2 peacock,2 annas of george v king emperor 1930,two rupee note with tiger on reverse,bundle of ten rupee note with boat on reverse,100 old note n more+.please contact if you are interestd= +919862653167,

  13. I have 10 rupee note * no.01f*030033

  14. A wonderfully fascinating post as always Rajeev

  15. Thank you so much, Adam for your very encouraging comment. Really appreciate. Wish you a fantastic New Year !!

  16. I have CD deshmukh 10 rupees 2 Boat note.It is UNC condition.Interested buyers please call or msg me on 9820451096 or email

  17. I have 5 rs note with 3 deers of p.c bhattacharya & 10 rs note with 1 boats of c.d deshmukh..anyone want to buy,or

  18. hi i have a half anna coin and one anna coin of lord hanuman ,of 1818 can u tell me the present value

  19. Hi Pradyumna,
    The best place to check up latest valuations of coins is auction sites like ebay or coin exhibitions. You may find the latest valuations through these leads.