At an RBI function early last month, Prime Minister Narendra Modi asked why India still imports paper and ink to print its currency notes, instead of making them in India. He then exhorted to make the Indian rupee truly swadeshi by using Indian ink and paper, as part of his government's 'Make in India' programme.
"Can we not take a pledge that from a certain date onwards the paper and ink used to print our currency are both Indian?" he asked at the function to mark the bank's completion of 80 years.
India may not be far away from making it a reality, because a Gujarat-based company apparently supplies green ink used in the printing of the US dollar, according to a report.
"We believe that one of our customers is supplying green to the greenback in USA...part of the greenback ink - the green colour comes from our pigment," Ashish N Soparkar, managing director, Meghmani Organics told NDTV.
Greenback is the nickname of the US dollar and it is currently printed in denominations of $1, $2, $5, $10, $20, $50, and $100.
"Pigments go into colouring multiple products. It goes into the ink, it goes into the plastic, rubber, paint, everywhere wherever you see colour, colour comes from pigment," Soparkar said.
"For ink not the fountain pen ink, but the packaging ink, newspaper ink, magazine ink, poster ink. Lot of applications including security ink like currency notes, bond papers etc.," Soparkar added.
Soparkar said that the company exports half of its output to 80-85 countries.
The company aims to increase revenues from the pigments business to cross Rs 500 crore in the current fiscal year from Rs 430 crore in 2014-2015.
Meghmani Organics, which manufactures general agrochemicals and pigments, is listed on both the National Stock Exchange (NSE) and the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE).
The company's share price witnessed a massive gain of over 70 per cent in the last one year, rising 20 percent in the last week alone.
As far as the Indian rupee is concerned, almost 80 per cent of the notes are printed on imported cotton-based paper, according to a senior RBI official.