2018 - Sri Lanka - 1000 Rupee note
70th Independence - Celebrating Diversity

The Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) issued, for circulation, a commemorative currency note for the 70th Anniversary of Independence of Sri Lanka with the theme "Celebrating Diversity" on 2018 January 30th, dated 2018-02-04.
Front: Landscape
ශ්‍රී ලංකා මහ බැංකුව in Sinhala at Top center, and இலங்கை மத்திய வங்கி in Thamil and CENTRAL BANK OF SRI LANKA in English on next line. Legality Legend in 3 lines
ශ්‍රී ලංකාණ්ඩුව වෙනුවෙන් නිකුත් කරන ලද මේ
මුදල් නෝට්ටුව ශ්‍රී ලංකාව ඈතුළත ඕනෑම මුදල් ගණනක්
ගෙවිම සඳහා නිතියෙන් වලංගුය
Facsimile signatures above මුදල් ඈමති, and the මහ බැංකුවේ අධිපති , with date 2018-02-04 below. Horizontal Black Serial number on upper left and vertical Red Serial number on right. Sri Lankan Lion with sword to upper right.
An artist's impression of a Vihara, Kovil, Church and Mosque, are appearing at the center of the note replacing the image of Ramboda Tunnel in the current circulating Rs. 1000 currency note. Replacing the butterfly on on lower left corner a logo with a Sinhala boy and a Muslim boy with Topi(cap), with a burgher girl with brown hair to left and a Thamil girl with darker complexion and Bindi (3rd eye) on right. 70th Independence Celebration in two arcs in upper right and CELEBRATING DIVERSITY in two arcs at bottom. Illustrated are the Sri Lanka bird Hanging Parrot to the right, and Numeric 1000 at upper left and lower right. At bottom center the value රුපියල් දාහයි in Sinhala, ஆயிரம் ரூபாய் in Thamil and ONE THOUSAND RUPEES in English. The security thread is a Starchrome with 2.5 mm width, which changes colour from red to green with the letters CBSL RS1000
Back: Portrait
Numeric 1000 at upper left and lower right. ශ්‍රී ලංකා මහ බැංකුව in Sinhala, இலங்கை மத்திய வங்கி in Thamil and CENTRAL BANK OF SRI LANKA in English in 3 line. රුපියල් දාහයි in Sinhala, ஆயிரம் ரூபாய் in Thamil and ONE THOUSAND RUPEES in English in 3 lines at lower left. A drawing of Malpadaya dancer and a Dawul Bera drummer. The Rathnaprasadaya guard stone is on the upper right, on a vertical Band with a stylized floral motif, Dvithva Liya Vela. A map of Sri Lanka appears in the background centered to the left. Printer's name DE LA RUE in small text in bottom right.
Watermark: On left same Parrot flipped to right darker than back ground with vertical 1000 lighter to it's right.
Predominant Color : Green
Size : 148 x 67 mm
Serial Prefix : S70
Replacement Prefix: unknown
Florescent Fiber : Yellow & Red
Braille : Five Dots
Finance Minister : Mangala Samaraweera
CBSL Governor : I. Coomaraswamy
Range of Serial # : S70/1 000001 - S70/5 1000000
Mintage : 5,000,000
Folders : 5,000
Date on BankNote : 2018-02-04

The Green folder has Commemorative issue 2018-02-04 in 2 lines on upper left of Front Cover and the logo on the right with Rs 1000 below. A description of Note in English on inside front cover and in Sinhala and Thamil in inside back cover. Contact details for CBSL on backcover. The central image of currency note in faint background across front and back covers.

The identification of the four religious sites in Sri Lanka, are unfortunately not given even in folder. According to the Artist Mr Kelum Gunasekera who designed the note: The Sulugal Dambulu Purana Rajamaha Vihara at Viharahalmillewa near Kebithigollewa, the Vallipuram Alvar Vishnu Kovil is the oldest in Jaffna, the Madu Church in Mannar is a sacred site, which was a Pattini Devala from the Anuradhapura period, and Sainthamaruthu Jummah Mosque, is in Kalmunai.

Although the press release said the folders will be sold by the CBSL Economic History Museum, anticipating a rush, they were sold by the cash counter @CBSL in the first week. Each person is queue was sold only one folder, issuing a receipt with name and national identity number. A maximum of 2 currency notes were also issued. For unknown reasons on the first day of issue the serial numbers in folders started from 013001 while the circulation currency issued started from lower 009001.

The folder printed by PrintCare who have done the previous folders had some issues. Such a folder is most useful is to get a low serial number and a perfectly flat currency note in uncirculated condition. When notes are packed, the tight band that is put around each 100 itself causes the note to fold and in numismatic terms called AU (Almost Uncirculated). The note in folder seemed to have been badly handled and had many bumps. Also the currency note 148 x 67 mm, has been placed under a slightly narrower and taller window of 143 x 70 mm. The size 143 x 67 mm has also been printed below the window in Error This is size is for Rs 500, the Rs 1000 being 5 mm wider. I wish CBSL would seek Numismatic advice to avoid these issues.

Above Image of signatories shows a note which has been slabbed in a block of acrylic. Slabbed Serial #30 was put on display at the CBSL Museum indicating that at least 30 were slabbed and a rare collectible if one could be traced.

See also

Read my article Celebrating diversity: Modified Rs. 1000 note for Independence in 2018 February 11th, Sunday Times Plus Section. Image of note as printed in SundayTimes.

A media report over five years ago in 2012 September said that CBSL has given a written undertaking to include the words "this currency note issued on behalf the Government of Sri Lanka is valid for any financial transaction within Sri Lanka" in the Tamil and English language and provide equal prominence to all three languages when issuing currency notes in future. This has not yet been implemented although this note trying to celebrate diversity was probably the correct note with which to start. See Equality of Languages to be Enforced on Currency Notes.

In India where the language panel of currency note displays the denomination of the note in 15 of the 22 official languages of India, the legality is in only in English and Hindi. Sri Lanka should adopt same and put legality in link language of English, like it does in this case the text in logo.