First-ever Euro souvenir banknotes launched to celebrate Gandhi’s 150th birth year

Paying tribute to Mahatma Gandhi, the commemorative 12-notes series to be unveiled in phases from now until Oct 2, 2019

author_img JD Sen Published :  27th February 2019 01:36 PM   |   Published :   |  27th February 2019 01:36 PM
Gandhi Zero Euro 1 Promise to Mother 1888

Gandhi Zero Euro 1 Promise to Mother 1888

Mahatma Gandhi’s fans across the world will have a unique opportunity to possess the first-ever Euro Souvenir Indian notes that celebrate 150th year of the leader’s birth anniversary.

The limited-edition Zero Euro 12-notes commemorative series is being unveiled by UAE-based specialised numismatics company, Numisbing, with just 5,000 notes of each design. The first two notes of the series are launching now and the rest sequentially until Oct 2, 2019.

The notes designed by Dubai-based Indian artist, Akbar Saheb, the sole illustrator of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s book, Mann Ki Baat, are based on interesting and famous incidents from Gandhi’s personal and political life, paying rich tribute to the legendary figure, who remains a beacon for many across the world.

Explaining the background of the initiative, Ramkumar, Founder of Numisbing and President of International Bank Note Society, Dubai Chapter said: “Besides the fact that these commemorative notes have a huge shelf value, the bigger reason for the initiative was to bring Mahatma Gandhi back to life using incidents that are more than just history lessons. Only once before a similar initiative has been taken when the Indian government issued commemorative notes with the image of Gandhi in 1969 to celebrate his 100th birth anniversary. These notes were for public use as well.”

Ramkumar, a collector himself, also has his name recorded in the Limca Book of Records as the person having the unique collection of commemorative banknotes – 45 – issued for Mahatma Gandhi’s centenary in 1969. He has all denominations and all prefixes – 18 INR 1 notes, five INR 2 notes, seven INR 5 notes, 13 INR 10 notes and two INR 100 notes.

He added, “Initially, we thought we would do just one commemorative note but then realised that Gandhi’s life is full of inspirations and confining all of them to one would not be possible, or fair to the great man. So we decided to stagger it into a series of 12. We are inaugurating the series by releasing two notes first, which will talk about two very important events in Mahatma Gandhi’s life.”

“The Zero Euro note is a souvenir banknote with authorized by the European Central Bank and are printed in the same security printers which are used to print the Euro banknotes. These notes carry all the security features of Euro banknote, except that they are all marked as ‘0’, and are tested to ensure they cannot enter circulation as legitimate financial currency”, commented Steve, Co-Founder of Numisbing and Secretary of International Bank Note Society, Dubai Chapter.

Gandhi Zero Euro 2 Pietermaritzburg 1893

The first note discusses the three vows that young Mohandas Gandhi gave to his mother Puttlibai before he left for England for further studies in law. When Gandhi wished to continue his law studies in London, his mother was reluctant to send him since she felt that he may fall into bad habits.

A saint then suggested that Puttlibai should take three vows from Gandhi: One that he would not drink alcohol; two, that he would abstain from non-vegetarian food; and the third, that he will look upon other women as mothers or sisters.

The second note is based on the famous incident when Gandhi was thrown off a train at the Pietermaritzburg Railway Station, South Africa in 1893, when he refused to move from a “whites-only” compartment.

Despite being afraid, he stood his ground, and history says that this was the moment that Gandhi began his non-violence movement that eventually proved to be a critical factor in gaining independence for India from the British.


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A celebrated artist, Akbar Saheb has also painted a series of 12 paintings themed on Indian PM Narendra Modi and his achievements, which were also exhibited in Baroda, India, in early 2015.

Numisbing Group is a Dubai-based arts and numismatics (collection of Coins and Currencies), company established by a group of professionals in this field. Their advisory board consist of experts with more than 320 years of combined knowledge and experience, which helps them build a high quality of collections for investors.

Established in 2012, the Numisbing Group’s business includes Trading, Investments, Auctioning, Certification, Exhibitions, Limited edition prints, Arts rental, Consultancy and Investments in the field of Arts & Numismatics. The company also undertakes Art Commission based on clients’ requirements.

Numisbing has an exclusive Art gallery by the name of 71 ARTS located in the heart of Dubai, which showcases many important Royal, Islamic and UAE related paintings of famous artists which include the names of M F Husain and Akbar Saheb, among others.

Art being his passion and profession, Akbar Saheb is a full-time artist, and has more than 1,000 paintings to his credit. He has also exhibited a series of paintings paying tribute to the rulers of the UAE, including HH Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, and HH Sheikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

Entirely self-taught, Akbar Saheb is a master at Airbrushing, Oil, Acrylic and Watercolour mediums of painting. In colours, strokes and technique lies his skill to depict evocative images that express deep emotions from scenes of everyday life.

From capturing the spirit of wild horses to the alluring facets of a woman, Akbar believes in bringing to life topics that touch him emotionally and that allow him to communicate with the world.

Paying tribute to Mahatma Gandhi, the commemorative 12-notes series to be unveiled in phases from now until Oct 2, 2019. Limited-edition of 5,000 commemorative notes of each design will be issued worldwide. Designed by noted Dubai-based Indian artist, Akbar Saheb, each note is inspired by a famous incident from Gandhi’s life.