On Nov. 8 the government of India announced that its two most popular currency denominations, the 500 and 1000 rupee notes, would no longer be good as money effective at midnight. An exchange program to convert them to new rupee notes of the same amount at the bank was announced.
I had a trip to India already planned and was on a plane headed that way when the currency move was announced.
The effect of the currency ban was that no one in India would exchange money for U.S. dollars —because they did not have money to exchange — and locals mobbed banks, forming lines blocks long to turn in their old money for new bills. Many lines had to be supervised by police. (more…)