Terming Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s decision to demonetise high value currency notes as “startling and bold”, Chinese official media has said it is “far from enough” and India may “look at ideas” from China’s crackdown against corruption which has shown “efficiency”.

Modi in “a startling and sudden move” demonetised Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 currency notes to “demonstrate that he is truly up for a fiercer fight against black money and corruption”, an op-ed article in the state-run Global Times said.

“Modi means well and his decision was made based on the reality in India, since most illegal business in the underground economy is cash-only, and 500 and 1,000 rupee notes constitute over 80 per cent of all cash circulation in India. Nevertheless, we can hardly count on the new rule to fully root out corruption,” the article titled ‘Beijing offers clues for Modi’s new anti-corruption moves’.

Since Modi assumed office, he has carried out a number of measures to crack down on black money, corruption and tax evasion. However, many of them are believed to be “without teeth and can’t begin to scratch the surface of the problems he faces”, it said.

India’s new policy to scrap high value notes is considered a “risky, but a bold and decisive step”, it said.

Man puts a notice outside his eatery in Mumbai after government scrapped Rs 500 and Rs 1000 currency notes/ Source: Reuters

“And yet, delivering a corruption-free country requires more than banning currency notes. The key should be reforming systems. In this regard, New Delhi might need to look for ideas from Beijing,” it said, referring to the massive anti-graft campaign carried out by President Xi Jinping in which over a million officials at different levels were punished.

Since the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party in 2012, during which Xi was elected as its general secretary, and taking over as the President and military chief launched the anti-graft campaign which also attracted criticism that he used it effectively to consolidate his power emerging as the most powerful Chinese leader after party founder Mao Zedong.