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Thursday December 01, 2022

Fact-check: Does new Pakistan banknote omit anti-corruption message?

Multiple posts on Facebook and Twitter claim Pakistan's central bank has omitted a quotation about the importance of earning an honest living from the newly introduced 75 rupee banknote

By AFP
October 17, 2022
Image showing the commemorative 75-rupee note. — Twitter/ SBP
Image showing the commemorative 75-rupee note. — Twitter/ SBP

Multiple posts on Facebook and Twitter claim Pakistan's central bank has omitted a quotation about the importance of earning an honest living from the newly introduced 75 rupee banknote. This is false. The quote -- printed on all of Pakistan's currency notes -- has been included on the new banknote, which was issued to commemorate the diamond jubilee of Pakistan's independence.

The claim was published in a post on Facebook on October 14, 2022.

It shows both sides of Pakistan's new 75 rupee banknote.

The post's Urdu-language caption translates to English as: "The quotation 'Earning an honest living equates to worship' has vanished from the 75 rupee note.

"Perhaps the State Bank has realised it is now very hard to earn a honest living in Pakistan, so they do not want to unnecessarily turn people into sinners."

A screenshot taken on October 15, 2022, of the misleading Facebook post. — AFP
A screenshot taken on October 15, 2022, of the misleading Facebook post. — AFP

The claim circulated online as Pakistan's Finance Minister Ishaq Dar promised international lenders to stay true to economic reforms despite a new estimate that his country urgently needs over $16 billion to recover from devastating floods. The News reported on the developments based on an AFP story here.

Images of the same banknote were published by several social media users alongside a similar claim.

Comments from some Facebook users indicated they believed the claim was true, while others responded by taunting the Pakistani authorities.

“It is very sad to hear,” wrote one Facebook user.

“.... People who issued this do not believe in earning a clean livelihood,” wrote another Facebook user.

But the claim is false.

The new 75 rupee banknote also carries the quotation on the back side, which translates to: "Earning an honest living equates to worship."

The quotation can be seen in this video tweeted by the State Bank of Pakistan:

Below is a screenshot of the central bank's explainer about the features of the new banknote issued to mark the 75th Independence day of Pakistan.

It shows the quote in question printed on the back of the note, as highlighted in red by AFP:

A screenshot taken on October 15, 2022, of a poster explaining the features of new commemorative banknote. — AFP
A screenshot taken on October 15, 2022, of a poster explaining the features of new commemorative banknote. — AFP

The same calligraphic inscription can also be seen in the images of the banknotes in the false posts.

Below are screenshots comparing the banknotes in the false posts (left) and the State Bank of Pakistan graphic:

A side-by-side comparison of the image shared by Pakistans central bank (right) and the one that appeared of Facebook. — AFP
A side-by-side comparison of the image shared by Pakistan's central bank (right) and the one that appeared of Facebook. — AFP

As of October 16, 2022, the same anti-corruption message has been printed on all of Pakistan's banknotes in circulation.