Monday, January 23, 2012

Show me the money | Coin collection | note collection | The New Indian Express

Show me the money | Coin collection | note collection | The New Indian Express

Rezwan Razack the Joint MD for Prestige Groups and an avid collector of Indian bank notes recently launched his book, ‘The Revised Standard Reference Guide to Indian Paper Money’ in association with Kishore Jhunjhunwalla. At the launch he also showcased some rare notes from his personal collection to his guests and well wishers.

The book chronicles the evolution of Indian currency dating back to 1770.

It captures the various nuances of modern day currency as well as incidents that helped shape this sector over the years. The book can probably be considered as a ready guide to answer any and every question related to the Indian currency.

Razack says, “Collecting rare bank notes has been my hobby and passion for many a decade now. I have been doing this for the past 40 to 45 years. This penchant has led me to travel the world over in pursuit of rare currency notes to add to my growing numismatic collection. Although there are several Numismatists today in India, I have over the years developed a passion specifically for rare notes and primarily those pertaining to early period.”

He further added, “I would like to dedicate this book to Indians to help them better understand the important role of currency in the history of our great nation and how it has transformed over the years.”

The exhaustive compendium features bank notes issued by other colonial powers such as the French and Portuguese, as also bank notes issued by the banks of the princely states of Kashmir and Hyderabad, and “prisoner of war” notes — currency tokens issued during war to prisoners.

Besides bank notes from the pre- 1861 private banking era and those issued after the British government took over the business of issuing currency post 1861, as a part of his collection Razack also possess rare printers’ proofs, and pre-printing notes showing signatures of early master engravers like Sir George Willis and Henry Archer.

Among the other rarities depicted are specimens of bank notes developed by the Reserve Bank of India in 1947 which had Mahatma Gandhi’s portrait on it.

This banknote did not come into circulation because in the end, the RBI decided to depict instead, the Ashok Pillar, the national emblem.

It was only in 1996 that Gandhi’s portrait replaced the Lion Capital on the rupee banknote. Later this year, Razack also intends to open a museum that will display his collection of rare notes in a custom designed museum in Prestige Shantiniketan in Whitefield.

This is slated to be India’s first museum of bank notes.

1 comment:

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