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Transferring money without moving money, Hawala, no more! | Coastweek

NEW DELHI India -- With signature of Kenyan Asian Urjit R Patel one of the first Rs 2000 note to get into circulation this morning.

 

Transferring money without moving money, Hawala, no more! | Coastweek

NEW DELHI India -- On the reverse is the image of India’s satellite Mangal Yaan.

 

Transferring money without moving money: 'Hawala', no more!

NEW DELHI India -- As an overseas Indian if you are planning to send money by ‘hawala’ to your relatives back home in India, forget it for now, writes Swami Anand Kul Bhushan.

Why?

Because Prime Minister Narendra Modi unleashed ‘a surgical economic strike’ against black money by suddenly declaring that Rs. 500 and Rs. 1,000 notes ceased to be legal tender from 11 November 2016.

But what is 'hawala'?

A traditional system of transferring money – without moving actual money - used in Arab countries and South Asia, whereby the money is paid to an agent who then instructs an associate in the relevant country or area to pay the final recipient.

Known also as ‘chitti’, the system by-passes the legal routes like the banking system or official money transferring companies to remit money.

In fact, "money transfers without money movement".

You pay the amount you want to send to a 'hawala' dealer at the going rate, usually less than the bank rate, and get a password or a simple piece of paper with an innocent message.

You give the password or hand the message to a person at a specific address where you or your relative collects the cash.

At both points, a large pile of cash is needed and this cash is unaccounted or black money.

As payments usually happen without any foreign exchange transactions, they can be made at other than official exchange rates.

This system helps the uneducated labour in the Middle East and elsewhere.

Without going to the bank and filling up forms, depositing the cash and then informing their usually uneducated relatives to collect the cash from their local bank, it delivers the money to them by simple identification and a password.

The shady 'hawala' operators more than often have links with smugglers, betting syndicates, drug dealers and terrorists for using huge amounts of cash for their illegal activities.

Thus what started as a legitimate IOU note in the Middle Ages and in the heydays of the Silk Route to help merchants not to carry cash lest they be robbed has become illegal.

"With thousands of expats using it every day, the amount is in thousands of crores and is a perfect façade for other illegal transactions.

"The real flesh however comes from transactions worth thousands of crores (billions) made by industrialists and politicians and is used by the 'hawala' handlers to fund their illegal traders like drugs and arms, terrorist networks and anti-national ‘revolutions’," explains Dr. Subramaniam Swamy, a noted economist and a maverick politician.

Thus, a global crackdown on hawala has hurt these dealers since 9/11 in USA.

Now on another 9/11 in India, it is a knockout punch for black money, forged currency and smuggling.
.

Now 'hawala' deals are not happening simply because their agents in India do not have the piles of cash in Rs. 500 or Rs. 1,000 notes, sometimes counterfeit, to dish out.

The ones they had have become useless.

It may take some time to make a new pile with the new notes of Rs. 500 and Rs. 2,000, especially legally.

So no hawala transfers for now.

 
 

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