There are many reasons that can lead to demonetization of a banknote. But in most cases, it is not easy for such to happen and for this to take place there must be many issues to support the same. India is one of the countries that did change its banknotes. Several reasons accompany this achievement. This paper will analyze the 2016 Indian Banknote Demonetization through the notions of epistemology and methodology, based on the theories that are described in the books written by Niccol Machiavelli and Karl Marx. Next, will then explain the possible motivations and ambitions behind this event, by each theorist. Finally, this paper will further illustrate the general responses, which Machiavelli and Marx will call for in consonance with their theories written in their books.
On November 8th, 2016, the Indian government, led by Narendra Modi, the Prime Minister of India, announced the demonetization of all previous Mahatma Gandhi series Rupees with the face values of 500 and 1000, through an unscheduled live televised address to the nation. The policy was activated since the midnight of the announcement date, and citizens who held the demonetized currencies had a time limit of 50 days to exchange for the new currencies. The plan to demonetize was kept highly confidential within a group less than ten people and had been furtively planned for over six months before the announcement day (Mali, 2016). The Cabinet of Indian Government was only informed followed by the Prime Minister’s announcement to the public. Posterior to the report, Urjit Patel, the Governor of the Reserve Bank of India explained this event as a counter-terrorism action due to the severe amount of forgery currencies that were existing in the Indian economic system. During his statement, he also claims that this event was designed in efforts to against corruptions and tax evasions in India.
Throughout the Prince and the Discourses, one of the most significant responsibilities for the ruler of the state Machiavelli emphasizes is that to establish and maintain the stability of the state. Considering the changes in time, in the case of this event, the Prince who is then indicated in the book can now be considered as paralleled to the main political figures within the Indian government, such as, the Prime Minister of India. Obviously, the current Indian political system is different from what is recommended in the Prince, but the essential political ideologies that he mentions in the book are universal in the field of politics. Instead of what Machiavelli has argued in the book, the most stable political system exists in the form of a mixed republic similar to the ancient Rome, the current politics in India take place within the framework of constitution. As a federal parliamentary democratic republic, India adopts the dual policy system with brunches of the state and the government, each ruled by the President and the Prime Minister of India.
The Indian situation is what is identified as political realism based on Machiavelli’s arguments.
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