The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) is the central bank of the country. As the central bank, it is also the custodian of the country’s monetary heritage. To document and preserve India’s monetary history for the posterity and as a part of the Reserve Bank’s education and outreach programme for the common man, especially the students, the Reserve Bank has conceived the Monetary Museum.
The first of its kind in India, the Reserve Bank’s Monetary Museum was inaugurated in 2004 by India’s President, Dr. A P J Abdul Kalam. The Museum attempts to demystify money as it evolved from the age old barter system to the present stored value cards. On display in the Museum are, coins of various sizes and shapes issued since 6th century B.C. to the present times. There are also panels of bank notes and instruments of indigenous banking like hundies. All this is explained through graphic panels in English and Hindi.
The Museum also has a screen for trading in foreign exchange with live quotes on foreign exchange, commodities and share prices. Visitors can not only see how exchange rates of various currencies change but can also take imaginary positions in currency, sell or buy and make or lose money!
For children, information kiosks provide information with entertainment. They can learn about features of currency notes and facts about coins while playing games and while leaving, one can pick up brochures on the story of money in India, India’s contemporary currency, Indian coinage and precious signatures. One can also buy mementos like posters on coins and currency notes, post cards and greeting cards.