Growth in number of banknotes

The rising number of banknotes has outpaced the expansion of India's economy. In the past five years, circulation of currency notes grew 40 percent, compared with 30 percent economic growth. The increase in 500 and 1,000 rupee notes has been the steepest.

Cumulative percent change since 2011

Banknotes in circulation

While the number of 500 and 1,000 rupee notes combined account for less than a quarter of all notes, they are worth over 86 percent of the value in circulation.

Number of notes as of March 2016 (in millions)

Share of total value as of March 2016

Counterfeit banknotes

By eliminating counterfeit currency, the government also hopes to hit the finances of militants who target India and are suspected of using fake 500 rupee notes to fund operations.

Notes detected per fiscal year

How long will it take India to print new money

Even in a best-case scenario, in which India's four banknote presses all churned out an equal number of new 500 and 2,000 rupee notes, it would take at least three months to hit the 8 trillion rupee target, compared to Modi's target timeframe of 50 days.

Percentage of printed: 500 rupee notes 2,000 rupee notes

Using all printing capacity

Using existing capacity for 500 and 1,000 notes

Source: Reserve Bank of India
By Simon Scarr, Jessica Wang, Weiyi Cai | REUTERS GRAPHICS