Research Article
The Security Press, Currency Note Press, Mints & Security Paper Mill of India, Author - Mr. Rezwan Razack
Currency Note Press, Nasik - the Beginning:
In 1922, Lt. Col. G. W. Willis, Master of Mint at Bombay and F.D. Asooli, Controller of Printing and Stationery, Government of India, Delhi, were appointed to explore the feasibility of printing notes in India. Based on their report in 1924, the Government of India arranged to set up an experimental press. Also to test the possibility of security printing in India. During 1925-26, the Government decided to terminate the contract with the Bank of England for the printing of currency notes with effect from January 1, 1928. This was originally to expire in June 1929.

Nasik Road was selected as the site for the Security Press for two reasons:
1. No sudden & large changes in humidity and temperature.
2. Nasik is situated on the main railway line having direct access to all parts of India.
A site was selected close to Nasik Road railway station. The construction of buildings including staff-quarters began in August 1926 and was completed by the beginning of 1928.
Security Printing India (S.P.I.) Nasik Road
The view above taken soon after completion can no longer be seen as trees and bungalows fill the foreground
The Currency Note Press just behind S.P.I. separated from it by the railway line
Central Stamp Store is also in this building
A ship's bell from H.M.S. Ganges was used to call
the operatives to work from 1928 to 1934
HMS Ganges was an 84-gun second rate ship of the line of the Royal Navy, launched on 10 November 1821 at Bombay Dockyard, constructed from teak. She is notable for being the last sailing ship of the Navy to serve as a flagship, and was the second ship to bear the name. In 1906, she was renamed HMS Tenedos III, then moved to Devonport to become part of the training establishment In 1923, she was finally taken out of service and transferred to the dockyard, and in 1929 she was sold for breaking up

The buildings including quarters for the staff cost just over Rs.18 lakhs, while the printing machinery and equipment accounted for a little more than Rs.8 lakhs and the balance of nearly Rs.2 lakhs covered the electric power equipment, water supply, drainage, railway siding and the cost of the land making a total cost of a little less than Rs.27 1/2 lakhs in all. A Central Stamp Store for the whose of India has since been added at a cost of Rs.8 1/2 lakhs.

The press was formally inaugurated on April 14, 1928. The invitation card was in the form of a small booklet.
CNP Invitation card in the form of a booklet
‘CNP Invitation card in the form of a booklet
CNP Invitation card in the form of a booklet
CNP Invitation card in the form of a booklet
CNP Invitation card in the form of a booklet
CNP Invitation card in the form of a booklet
The Hon. Sir Bhupendra Nath Mitra was invited to press a switch to start the printing press
Photograph of both sides of the official invitation to the inauguration of the Currency Note Press
This was designed and made at Nasik to show how the front and back of a bank note could be printed to register exactly
The Train Pass
Elaborate arrangements were made for the inauguration.
The train left Bombay (Victoria Terminus) station at 7.30 a.m. in the morning and arrived at the Press siding at 11.30 a.m.
Lunch Menu on Inauguration Day
It returned from the press siding at 3.30 p.m. and reached Bombay at 7.30 p.m. Morning tea and breakfast were served in the train on the outward journey and afternoon tea on the return journey.
Rs.10 Specimen Banknote given to all Guests on Inauguration of CNP
The invitees were also given a Rs.10 Specimen banknote at the opening. The original design and trial printing of similar notes was made by De La Rue & Co. in England. This design was withdrawn in 1933.
The Security Press at Nasik undertook first the printing of 5 Rupees notes of the same new pattern that the Bank of England was printing since 1925. They were released from Kanpur circle on October 9, 1928.

This was followed by the notes of 100 Rupees of the pattern of the notes printed in England since 1926.
The notes of Rupees 10 of an entirely new pattern, different from those printed in England were printed at Nasik and issued in July 1930. At the same time, the notes of Rupees 50 of and entirely new pattern were also issued for the first time.
Security Printing Nasik - The Post Card Section
Security Printing, Nasik - Department of Embossed Envelope Machines
Security Printing Nasik
A section of the Currency Note Press
Security Printing Nasik
The Paper Store for Currency & Stamps
Security Printing Nasik Currency Note Press
Man examining first print to check correct alignment
Security Printing Nasik Currency Note Press
Completed notes being examined for errors
The high denomination notes of Rupees 500, 1000 and 10,000 continued to be printed by the Bank of England in the old pattern, until its contract was finally terminated in December 1930. Nasik Press undertook the printing of the notes of Rs.1000 and 10,000 from the year 1931-32. These notes, like the notes of smaller denominations were entirely new in the designs and were printed on both sides. Prior to the issue of these new notes, the notes of these denominations were cashable only at their office of issue at Calcutta, Bombay, Madras, Kanpur, Lahore and Rangoon. The new notes were universalised and were cashable anywhere in the country, irrespective of the name of the circle printed on them. Along with these new notes, the old unifaced notes continued in circulation, but were not reissued once they reached the currency offices.

With the view of reducing the cost of printing and distribution, 5 and 10 Rupees notes of a new design were issued on March 8 and July 1 respectively, in 1933. They were printed on thinner paper and were smaller in size in comparison to the notes issued earlier. So, within a year, the old thick paper was re-introduced for the notes, but the size remained the same.
Souvenir given to Col. Sir George Willis - the first master of Security Press of India, at his retirement party
The components of the design were selected directly from the invitation card made six years before.
This illustrates well the principle (in the De La Rue tradition) of building up a graphic design from constituent parts
Currency Note Press, Nasik and India Security Press, Nasik
Currency Note Press, Nashik Road, was established in the year 1928 with the objective of printing currency/bank notes of denominations as per the requirements and indents placed by Reserve Bank of India from time to time.

India Security Press, Nashik Road, is more than 80 years old establishment and was set up by British during Colonial rule, for printing of court fee, fiscal, postal, non-postal stamps and postal stationery items, at Nashik Road in 1925. The currency notes were also being printed in this press upto 1980.
1923 - Project report submitted.
1924 - Report approved and foundation stone laid.
1925 - Printing of postal stationery & stamps started.
1928 - Printing of currency notes started.
1929 onwards - various other security products added.
1962 - Re. 1/- printing started at new location.
1980 - Printing of all currency notes shifted to new location.
1989 - Low security products discontinued for meeting the requirement of high security products.
2006 - Printing of Fragrance stamps started.
2008 - Printing of E-Passport started.
Bank Note Press, Dewas (Madhya Pradesh)
Bank Note Press, Dewas, was established in 1973 and it is notified as commercial Undertaking under Ministry of Finance. It prints Bank Notes of Rs.20, Rs.50/-, Rs.100/- and Rs.500/- denominations. This Press also manufactures high quality security inks for various security printing organizations.

Bank Note Press, Dewas, an industrial unit of Government of India, ministry of finance, Department of Economic Affairs, was conceived in the year 1969 and estiblished in 1974. It is situated near the famous Chamundeshwari Hillock in the small town of Dewas, in the Malwa region of Madhya Pradesh, spreading over an area of 185 Hectares.

It was then the only unit toadopt the new technology of Intaglio Printing in the South Asian Region and in a very short time, could become a dominant player in the arena of printing high denomination notes with higher security features. For the last 30 years, Bank Note Press is engaged in the sovereign function of printing and meeting the ever-increasing demand of higher denomination bank notes by RBI. It was established with the objective of producing world class, high quality, new family bank notes to impede forgery by incorporating the then latest modern techniques like, the Intaglio Printing, the Dry Offset Printing with security features such as continuous bleed of tints, interlock designs, see-through designs, use of fluorescent inks etc. It is one of the fairly big, old and unique industrial unit of its kind in and around Dewas, having great bearing on the economy and living standards of the people of the region. In the midst of nearly 250 small and medium size industries of Dewas, it is truly like a jewel in the crown.The unit got the distinction to be the first and only unit under the C&C Division of the Ministry of Finiance to achive the coveted ISO : 9001 for the Quality Management System and ISO : 14001 for the Environment Management System, a stamp of our adherence to the Internal Quality System both for production and environment.The design of Bank Note Press and machinery and technology for establishing the unit were obtained by entering into a contract with one M/s DLRG and Konic & Bauer, now known as KBA Giori S.A., Switzerland, pioneers in the manufactures of security machines and allied equipments. The production was established in the year 1974 and first consignment of new family of notes were remitted to Reserve Bank of India in March'1975.

Bank Note Press, Dewas has been equipped with all the facilities for printing and processing of the bank notes of high quality and has various wings to control various activities like printing, quality control, engineering, examination group, ancillary and administrative group. The Central Industrial Security Force has been entrusted with the maintenance of security, law and order etc. of both the press area and the colony area.

Bharatiya Reserve Bank Note Mudran Private Limited (BRBNMPL)
Bharatiya Reserve Bank Note Mudran Private Limited (BRBNMPL) was established by Reserve Bank of India (RBI) as its wholly owned subsidiary on 3rd February 1995 with a view to augmenting the production of bank notes in India to enable the RBI to bridge the gap between the supply and demand for bank notes in the country. The BRBNMPL has been registered as a Public Limited Company under the Companies Act 1956 with its Registered and Corporate Office situated at Bangalore. The company manages 2 Presses one at Mysore in Karnataka and the other at Salboni in West Bengal. The present capacity for both the presses is 30 billion note pieces per year on a 3-shift basis.

The Board of Directors headed by a non Executive Chairman nominated by Reserve Bank of India oversees the overall affairs of the Company. The Managing Director is the whole time Chief Executive of the Company and is also a member of the Board. The members of the Board of Directors are persons of high eminence drawn from various professional fields. The Managing Director is assisted by a team of senior officers in the Corporate Office and two presses at Mysore and Salboni.

Both the presses have installed the latest "state of the art" Technology in bank note printing. The machinery at Mysore Site has been supplied by M/s. De La Rue Giori, now KBA Giori, Switzerland and that of Salboni by M/s. Komori Corporation, Japan. Both the presses are equipped with sophisticated Security Surveillance Systems. The Corporate mission of the Company is to produce bank notes conforming to international standards set by Central Banking and monetary authorities of the world and makes them available in adequate quantities to the Reserve Bank of India at competitive prices. BRBNMPL seeks to achieve this mission through its most valued asset, its people. It has also gone in for extensive automation and the Enterprise Resource Planning. The BRBNMPL has already put in place an effective Quality Management System as embodied in the ISO 9001 - 2008 and also environmental management systems and has also been certified as ISO 9001 : 2008 and ISO 14001: 2004 Company.

Security Paper Mill
India did not have a paper mill that produced security paper that could be used for printing currency or banknotes. This watermark paper was imported from England till 1968, until when India's own Security Paper Mill was started with the help of Portals. This meant that all watermarked paper or security paper that was required for printing banknotes or currency notes had to be imported. The various Security Press and Mints that produce Banknotes, Currency Notes & Coins are listed. Also is described The India Security Paper Press which produces the paper that is needed to print our currency and banknotes:

Security Paper Mill, Hoshangabad (Madhya Pradesh)
Security Paper Mill (SPM), Hoshangabad was established in 1968 and it is notified as non-commercial undertaking under the administrative control of Govt. of India, Ministry of Finance. This unit is responsible for manufacturing of different types of Security Papers.

Independent India had a dream to come out of import burden of currency paper for a long time. To become self reliant on currency and bank note paper requirement and also to save the drain of foreign exchange, in early sixties the decision for dream project "Security Paper Mill" was realized. Looking into the main pre-requisites for any process industry like land, water, electricity, transportation and manpower etc, Hoshangabad had been chosen as the best option.

The buildings were designed and constructed by the CPWD and the civil works commenced in July, 1962. Construction of the main building about 500M long and 60M wide, commenced on the 28th Oct., 1963. Eastern end of the building is two storeyed and the rest single storeyed. Entire production sections are force ventilated and the finishing area is air conditioned with the air-conditioning plant located in the basement.

The first pair of paper making machines was commissioned on 27th June 1967. The other pair of 3rd and 4th machine was commissioned on 27th Nov 1967. Mill was formally inaugurated and dedicated to the nation on the 9th March, 1968 by the then Deputy Prime Minister, Shri Morarji Desai.

As the name implies, Security Paper Mill Hoshangabad manufactures high quality Bank note and other security papers required by Security Presses. Like any other paper industry, SPM is also engaged in continuous process system. The constituents of process are Stock Preparation, Paper Making, Calendaring, Cutting and finally finishing process. But unlike other ordinary/conventional paper mills, S.P.M. has a unique distinction of being the only one of its kind. It is the only paper mill in the country which produces high quality Bank Note and other Security Papers. Quality of the paper is the key factor of the organization which is accomplished in a very high security environment. It is the basic object of ours to keep a close monitoring and constant control on the critical parameters specified by the presses and to satisfy the customer’s need.

This mill is set up under expert collaboration from Messrs Portals Limited United Kingdom. M/s. Portals Limited, UK also provided the training to the staff and officers in paper making and allied processes. 55 officers were initially trained in 3 batches for a period of one year each.

Security Printing & Minting Corporation of India (New Delhi)
The Security Printing & Minting Corporation of India Limited (SPMCIL) was formed after corporatization of all nine Mints/ Presses/ Mill which were earlier working under the Ministry of Finance.

Security Printing & Minting Corporation of India Ltd. (SPMCIL), a wholly owned company of Government of India, has been incorporated in January 2006 with its HQs in New Delhi. Security Printing & Minting Corporation of India Ltd. (SPMCIL), a wholly owned company of Government of India, is engaged in the manufacture of security paper, printing of currency and bank notes, non-judicial stamps paper, postage stamps, travel documents, minting of coins, etc. There were four Mints, two Note Printing Presses, two Security Printing Presses and one Security Paper Mill under Ministry of Finance. These units were departmental organizations under Currency and Coinage Division of the Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance, Govt. of India.

The main function of the Mints is minting of coins to meet domestic requirements. High Quality security inks are also manufactured and supplied. The Assay Departments attached to Mumbai and Kolkata Mints assay gold, silver and alloys for coins, medals, badges and commemorative coins etc. Mints possibilities of taking up export assignments in minting is being explored. While the note printing presses are involved in printing currency/bank notes, the security printing presses produce non-judicial stamp papers, postage stamps, commemorative stamps, postal stationery, travel documents etc. These units were departmental organisations under Currency and Coinage division of the Department of Economic Affairs Ministry of Finance, Govt. of India before their corporatisation in February 2006.

India Government Mint, Mumbai (Maharashtra)
This Mint was established in the year 1829 which is one of the oldest mints of the Country. It has got the capacity of minting coins, medals & further, it is also taken care of refining of Gold and Silver and other metals.

India Government Mint, Kolkata (West Bengal)
This mint was established in 1952 at Kolkata. Originally different minting facilities were created in and around Kolkatta in the 18th Century. One of the mints was modernised in the year 1952 and it was known as Alipore Mint. Later-on Government of India, renamed it as India Government Mint, Kolkatta.

The first Calcutta Mint was established in 1759-60 whose site is not known. At that time Calcutta Mint was producing coins with mint-name Murshidabad. In 1790 with the modern machinery brought from England, the second Calcutta Mint established at the site of Gillet Ship building Establishment which was taken over by the Stamp and Stationary Committee in 1833. All the coins issued from this mint are in the name of Murshidabad Mint and all bearing same year AH 1204. On March' 1824 the foundation of 3rd Calcutta Mint was laid on the Strand Road and was opened for production from 1st August' 1829. Before 1835 all the coins issued from this mint are also in the name of Murshidabad Mint. The building of 3rd Mint with its imposing frontage was designed on the replica of the temple of Minerva of Athens. The operative blocks were hidden out of view by the magnificent frontage. Recently, Kolkata Municipal Corporation has declared this building as a symbol of heritage.

This mint was named as "Silver Mint". At the starting time the coinage production capacity was varying between 3 lakhs to 6 lakhs pieces per day. In 1860 annexe known as "Copper Mint" was built to the north of the Silver Mint intended exclusively for copper coinage. Both Silver Mint and Copper Mint used to function side by side and production were Bronze, Silver and Gold coins. Both Silver Mint and Copper Mint were well equiped by the coining presses supplied by Boulton and Watt of Soha, Birmingham, England. Apart from minting of coins another important function of the Kolkata Mint was the manufacturing of Medals and decorations during British regime, which is still continuing, In addition to home consumption of coinage, Calcutta Mint produced coins for countries and estates within and outside India.

In the late 1930's it was decided to build a new Mint at Alipore and the foundation work had been completed by early 1942. But due to 2nd World War the construction was interrupted. Later on when the Free India was a child of 5 years, Alipore Mint was opened by the Hon'ble Finance Minister of Government of India Shree C.D. Deshmukh on the 19th March, 1952. The full operation for the coinage and preparation of medals, decorations and badges started in Alipore Mint from this date.

India Government Mint, Hyderabad (Andhra Pradesh)
India Government Mint, Hyderabad was originally started in the year 1903 in the Hyderabad city however, after modernisation, it was re-located to a place – Cheralapalli, near Hyderabad in the year 1997. This is the most modern minting unit in the country having refining facility as well as facility to mint coins, medals and medallion.

Security Printing Press, Hyderabad (Andhra Pradesh)
This organization was established in the year 1982 and it is notified as commercial industrial unit under the administrative control of Govt. of India, Ministry of Finance. It is responsible for printing & supply of low denomination Non-Judicial Stamp papers, Postal Stamps & Postal Stationery to Department of Post.

India Government Mint, Noida (Uttar Pradesh)
This Mint was established in the year 1988. The Minting facility at Noida takes care of the requirement of Coins. This is one of the modern mints in the Country.
Copyright © 2021 Todywalla's Auction