by a Thinker, Sailor, Blogger, Irreverent Guy from Madras

Dollars and Cents: 3 pieces of brilliance

The year 2010 has been the year of (unearthed) scams and uncontrolled inflation and one is glad that the GoI has become wary of both.  The powers that be are neither uncaring nor uninvolved but simply brilliant.  As we prepare ourselves to enter a new year, it is a nice feeling to know that we can credit them with the 3rd sobriquet, instead of the first two.

Thus the GoI has ruled that in six months all coins under the value of 50 paise will become ‘illegal’ - to be more precise will cease to be legal tender.  As it is, it is not as if that we still use the 5, 10 or 20 paisa coins but to term them as not-legal anymore is a stroke of brilliance unparalleled in history.  In case you wonder why don’t they just stop minting them and let disuse wither them away?, they have already tried that.  Those so called small denomination coins are not being minted for quite some time now.

The report adds that from June 30th, 2011 all ‘transactions’ will have to be rounded to 50 or 100 paisa (Re. 1) including in the statutory books (of accounts).  This is a dazzle on top of the brilliance.  In one decree the GoI has done away with all numbers between 0 and 50 and again from 50 to 100.  This is the greatest invention after ‘zero’ and is it any wonder that it is from the same civilization gave the world the concept of ‘zero’.

The news hit while I was fetching milk and some of the unthinking persons around the milk booth, as usual, tried to pick a quarrel with this policy.  The vendor let go first, that the current milk price is Rs. 267 / 30 days (Rs. 8.90 per day) per half litre and will have to be revised.  I pointed out that rounding it to Rs. 9/- would make is easy for calculation, easy for him.  Which calmed him down till he realised that all along he has been charging Rs. 9/- from non-card holders.

A Geezer wailed that the cost of 'Rusk’ biscuits which has been a tradition with his afternoon tea (since he has a practice of eating only twice a day - brunch and supper) is going to go up from Rs. 15.25 per packet.  Rusk is nothing but twice baked bread and as it has been said famously before “can’t get bread ? eat some cake!”

The Yuppie who came on his Honda-Activa to fetch milk lamented that the cost of his notepad which sells for Rs. 3.25/- now will go up.  Come on, if he can come around on a bike to fetch milk, a distance of less than 2 city blocks (200 metres), at half past five in the morning, he can well afford the mark-up;  If he can’t, he’s to learn to use his Blackberry for note taking.

A Babushka fretted about loss of income on her life earnings-deposits (Rs. 10,00,000/-) fetching 9.25% p.a. now, when marked down to 9% would fetch Rs. 208/- less p.m.  Silly woman, worried about such measly amounts like $4 a month; she can always move to Bangalore where the government is distributing subsidized food grains.

But my mind blanked out when a primary school teacher exclaimed, ‘Thank God, I don’t have to teach the brats how to total 18 plus 24 minus 13 anymore’.  I probably blinked because I never got around to memorising the 11 & 12 multiplication tables and have been in trouble ever since.

In this blog there are better formatted multiplication tables as pdf and excel files.  They are from x1 to x16 (16 times) and are also in 2 formats (1x3, 2x3, 3x3 format & 3x1, 3x2, 3x3 format).  They would be better for printing or viewing, instead of the image file above

Sheesh!  I am really disgusted with these people who fail to meet progress even when they are slammed in the face with it!

Let us behold the foresight.  50 paisa = ~US 1 Cent.  If the US doesn’t have, doesn’t deem it necessary to have smaller denomination coins, why should we?  If we are going to join the US at the UNSC as P-6, we should start behaving as equals - and equality should start from bottom-up, not top-down.

My Mischievous Half murmurs, ‘What a nice picture this is - Washington, Lincoln and Gandhi, all together.  Now that we’ve got rid of lower denomination coins (below 1 cent) and as Rs. 50 is ~US$ 1; how about abolishing high denomination notes, like the 100, 500 and 1000?  They too must cost much to print and are more easily damaged than the abolished coins.  So why not get used to Jefferson, Hamilton and Jackson?’


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