Does Writing on Banknotes make them Invalid: RBI Clean Note Policy

No. Writing anything on the Indian Currency banknotes does not make them invalid and remains legal tender no matter what. However, the Reserve Bank of India, RBI expects people should avoid writing anything on the Indian Currency Bank Notes as it spoils their appearance while reducing their life.

All in all, if you find any Indian Currency bank notes with something scribbled on them, you can take them without any fear of their validity.

Does Writing on Banknotes make them Invalid: RBI Clean Note Policy

If you are seeing any messages being circulated on Social Media regarding scribbling on them making them invalid, please note that it is a fake claim. RBI has not released any new guidelines rejecting the currency notes with writings on them.

What RBI Says?

Under the Clean Note Policy by RBI, all citizens and currency users are requested to not write anything on the bank notes as it reduces their life.

Along with that, RBI has multiple other requests for Indian citizens under its Clean Note Policy which are mentioned below:

  • RBI suggests the user not use staplers on the currency notes.
  • It also requests users not to make garlands and toys, decorate mandaps and pandals and more.
  • RBI suggests that users not scribble writings on the currency notes.

However, you must note that you can exchange soiled notes and coins free of cost at teller counters of banks.

Free Exchange of Soiled Notes

According to the rules set by RBI, every established bank branch is required to offer the following services to its customers irrespective of the part of the country it is available in:

  • The banks are required to issue fresh banknotes and coins of the requested denominations on demand.
  • The banks are required to exchange tarnished notes for fresh ones.
  • Exchanging tarnished notes shall remain optional for small finance and payment banks.
  • Each bank is required to accept coins and notes for exchange and transactions.

As per the Reserve Bank of India, “All Bank notes with scribbling/stain (including colour stain) on them continue to be legal tender. Such notes can be deposited or exchanged in any bank branch.”


In this article, we learnt about the RBI Clean Note Policy that we are responsible to follow as well as the responsibilities towards tarnished notes of the banks which are established around us. I hope this article has helped you to learn more about your banknotes. Please share this article with people who need to learn about their banknotes.

Also Read:

RBI Rules & Regulations to Exchange Damaged Notes for Fresh Ones

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