Congress questions British note printer’s business in India
New Delhi, Jan 17 (IANS) Blaming the Centre for compromising the national interest, the Congress on Tuesday alleged the central government of collaborating with a blacklisted Britain based note printing company De La Rue.
“De La Rue has been shortlisted for printing of plastic notes in India despite it being blacklisted, showing complicity at the highest level,” said Oomen Chandy, former Kerala Chief Minister and senior leader of the Congress, at a press conference here.
He said: “In 2011, the then Finance Minister of State Namo Narain Meena responding to a question regarding security printing, in the Rajya Sabha, had stated that the security clearance was denied to De La Rue after they failed to comply to the specifications stipulated in the contract.”
Earlier in the month, Chandy, in a letter to Modi, cited a media report that three companies, including De La Rue, had been shortlisted for printing plastic notes, and requested the ministry concerned “publish the list of companies that are shortlisted/qualified for printing plastic currency in India”.
He noted that the British company was denied security clearance in 2011 and the current status has not been explained.
Chandy also wrote that the company was blacklisted during the UPA’s tenure as it could not “comply to the specifications of the contract”.
Rebutting the allegation, the company in a statement on December 9, said: “De La Rue categorically refutes the defamatory and malicious allegations about its business published in Indian media.”
“De La Rue is not supplying paper for printing of Indian currency and we are not associated with printing of currency in India at present in any form. De La Rue has received no notice nor are we aware that we are blacklisted in India,” it said.
“De La Rue does not supply currency paper and is not printing currency for Pakistan and would never supply currency paper manufactured for one country to another,” the statement added.
De La Rue designs, integrates, manufactures and delivers banknotes, banknote paper, polymer and security features.