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Offline Vincent

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Elusive copper-nickel commemorative coins of India, 2000-2008
« on: October 20, 2020, 09:05:52 PM »
There's a number of commemorative 5 rupee copper-nickel coins of the 21st century that seem to be difficult to find. Having had these coins listed on my want list for years, I decided to go and look for an explanation. I found many different pieces of information in many different places, so I think it's time to do a run-down of it all. I feel that presenting these things in a single post might help reduce confusion around the issue, for me personally and for other collectors – and it gives me the opportunity to add my two cents (or two paise) to the discussion. I also feel that some of the information I came across might be useful in other contexts going forward. I must stress that the tedious work of flipping through pocket change and recording information about what you find and what you don't find has been done by numismatists in India. It is only due to their dedication that it's possible for me to present all of the bits and pieces in one compilation.
   I will discuss main types only, not minor design variants, mint marks etc. The coins of the Republic of India are rich in such varieties, but for now, the main types are complicated enough in their own right.
   I initially went to the CoinsOfRepublicIndia blog. A large amount of information on coins of the Republic of India has been compiled there, which makes it a good starting point. The relevant sub-page about 5 rupee commemorative coins of 2004-2008 can be found here: https://coinsofrepublicindia.blogspot.com/2011/06/5-rupees-circulation-commemorative-part_4.html. (This sub-page lists only commemorative coins minted for circulation; you'll need to look elsewhere for non-circulation commemoratives). After that I looked in many other places, and I went through the relevant press releases from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).

Analysis of 5 rupee commemoratives dated 2004-2007
Until 2004 the 5 rupee coins were made out of copper-nickel. Around this time, mints began to switch from copper-nickel to stainless steel due to rising prices on the raw materials. Then, in 2009, they switched from stainless steel to nickel-brass. Nine types of commemorative 5 rupee coins dated between 2004 and 2007 were minted in both copper-nickel and stainless steel. They are:

  • 5 rupees 2004 Lal Bahadur Shastri
  • 5 rupees 2005 Dandi March
  • 5 rupees 2006 State Bank of India
  • 5 rupees 2006 Mahatma Basaveshwara
  • 5 rupees 2006 Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC)
  • 5 rupees 2006 Jagath Guru Sree Narayana Gurudev
  • 5 rupees 2007 Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak
  • 5 rupees 2007 Khadi and Village Industries Commission
  • 5 rupees 2007 First War of Independence (Sepoy Mutiny)

During this period, 5 rupee coins in commemorative mint sets were made of copper-nickel. Copper-nickel is a higher quality material (compared to steel); when done properly, the design of the die can be transferred to a copper-nickel blank successfully and create a beautiful, sharp coin. This can be a problem with steel, which is a very hard material, but also less expensive. Steel coins can be a bit dull because of the hardness of the material. No wonder, then, that copper-nickel was preferred for coins in mint sets for collectors. There are both proof versions and uncirculated versions of commemorative mint sets. The so-called uncirculated coins in these sets are actually in brilliant uncirculated (BU) condition, even if they are not marked as such. The stainless steel versions were made exclusively for the purpose of serving as circulating money. Perhaps unsurprisingly, I find that I have all nine types in stainless steel. They are all regular business strikes, made for ordinary circulation. I generally had no problems finding them, although the Tilak coin was more difficult than the others.
   There was talk of making both a copper-nickel and a stainless steel version of 5 rupees 2007 Bhagat Singh, just like the nine types listed above. However, the coins in the Bhagat Singh commemorative mint sets are made of steel. No copper-nickel versions of the Bhagat Singh coin seem to have been observed, so apparently this type does not exist in copper-nickel. Confusingly, nickel-brass versions of this type do exist.1 This must mean that nickel-brass blanks (intended for the post 2009 nickel-brass 5 rupee coins) by mistake ended up in the minting machine making the Bhagat Singh coins, thereby creating nickel-brass versions of this coin. But this is another kettle of fish, not directly related to the dual composition coin types made a few years earlier, during the switch-over from copper-nickel to steel.
   So, does that mean that the copper-nickel versions of the nine types above occur only in mint sets? Well, no. I have some that were taken from circulation. However, the copper-nickel coins are not so common, which should not come as a surprise, given that they were made at a point in time when copper-nickel was being phased out and replaced with stainless steel. Also, there's a discussion among Indian numismatists as to whether all of the copper-nickel versions of these nine types were released into circulation, or only some of them.
   I can say that I have regular business strike versions (i.e. made for general circulation) of the copper-nickel versions of 5 rupees 2004 Shastri, 2006 Basaveshwara, 2006 Gurudev and 2007 Tilak. (These should also be uncontroversial, because they are not rare). The CoinsOfRepublicIndia blog reports business strike versions of the copper-nickel versions of 5 rupees 2005 Dandi March, 2006 Oil and Natural Gas Corporation and 2007 First War of Independence, all confirmed with pictures.2 "asm" reports having found a 5 rupees 2005 Dandi March (copper-nickel) coin in circulation in Delhi in January 2012:

Picked up one from my taxi drivers loose change in Delhi yesterday - a Cu Ni Dandi March and 2 days before that I got one in FSS from my office change in Mumbai.

Amit

"ashishparui03" has said that he is so far able to confirm the existence of circulation versions of copper-nickel 5 rupees 2005 Dandi March, 2007 Khadi and Village Industries Commission and 2007 First War of Independence:

abhishek sir heres my opinion,
differences i spot between both the coins:
strikeing,surface finish and the edge.
in unc set coins the edge is mostly milled or partly milled with sharp finish
while in circulated coin ,consists of chain of beads in relief and each bead being followed by one inclined line in relief.  There shall be total 30 lines and 30 beads.  as said on the press release document.

can now confirm,5rs dandi,khadi and first war copper-nickel ,9 gms from mumbai mint were released for public circulation

Beekar the Numismatist also says that collectors report finding 5 rupees 2007 Khadi and Village Industries Commission in circulation.3 "rrjadhav76" has brought a picture of one of them (click the link to get to the picture):

This one looks like a circulation coin to me when compared to UNC set (primary difference being frost finish is used for circulation and glossy for UNC sets). Also the thickness of text of UNC coin is "bold" compared to this one since the UNC set coins are minted with higher pressure/slow speed.

Another picture of this type can be found on the MyIndianCoins blog.4 Altogether, this means that eight out of the nine types are confirmed to exist as business strike versions in copper-nickel for circulation, backed up by images. There's only one left, and this is:

  • 5 rupees 2006 State Bank of India (copper-nickel)

   Let's have a look at press releases of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). (Currency related press releases are available here: https://www.rbi.org.in/Scripts/BS_ViewCurrencypressrelease.aspx). The RBI is not a numismatic business and consequently informs the media and the general public, through press releases, about coins and banknotes that go into general circulation, not about collector oriented products.5 It did occur to me that the RBI might primarily be interested in the broader outline of things and in the quantity of coins available for release, rather than things like whether the coins currently in stock are e.g. of the Basaveshwara design or the Gurudev design, and whether they are of a copper-nickel composition or a steel composition. I made a list of all coins mentioned in the RBI's press releases and paired them with all eighteen combinations of design (nine types) and compositions (copper-nickel or steel). Here is the result:

  • 5 rupees 2004 Lal Bahadur Shastri (copper-nickel): Never officially acknowledged by RBI, but confirmed to exist.
  • 5 rupees 2004 Lal Bahadur Shastri (stainless steel): Issued by RBI October 1st, 2008 (press release 2008-2009/421).
  • 5 rupees 2005 Dandi March (copper-nickel): Never officially acknowledged by RBI, but confirmed to exist.
  • 5 rupees 2005 Dandi March (stainless steel): Issued by RBI July 18th, 2008 (press release 2008-2009/74).
  • 5 rupees 2006 State Bank of India (copper-nickel): Never officially acknowledged by RBI and might not have been released other than in mint sets.
  • 5 rupees 2006 State Bank of India (stainless steel): Issued by RBI October 1st, 2008 (press release 2008-2009/419).
  • 5 rupees 2006 Mahatma Basaveshwara (copper-nickel): Never officially acknowledged by RBI, but confirmed to exist.
  • 5 rupees 2006 Mahatma Basaveshwara (stainless steel): Issued by RBI July 18th, 2008 (press release 2008-2009/75).
  • 5 rupees 2006 Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) (copper-nickel): Never officially acknowledged by RBI, but confirmed to exist.
  • 5 rupees 2006 Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) (stainless steel): Issued by RBI October 1st, 2008 (press release 2008-2009/420).
  • 5 rupees 2006 Jagath Guru Sree Narayana Gurudev (copper-nickel): Issued by RBI December 31st, 2008 (press release 2008-2009/994).
  • 5 rupees 2006 Jagath Guru Sree Narayana Gurudev (stainless steel): Issued by RBI November 26th, 2008 (press release 2008-2009/773).
  • 5 rupees 2007 Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak (copper-nickel): Issued by RBI October 31st, 2007 (press release 2007-2008/597).
  • 5 rupees 2007 Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak (stainless steel): Never officially acknowledged by RBI, but confirmed to exist.
  • 5 rupees 2007 Khadi and Village Industries Commission (copper-nickel): Issued by RBI October 24th, 2008 (press release 2008-2009/558).
  • 5 rupees 2007 Khadi and Village Industries Commission (stainless steel): Issued by RBI October 24th, 2008 (press release 2008-2009/557).
  • 5 rupees 2007 First War of Independence (Sepoy Mutiny) (copper-nickel): Issued by RBI November 12th, 2007 (press release 2007-2008/652).
  • 5 rupees 2007 First War of Independence (Sepoy Mutiny) (stainless steel): Issued by RBI December 18th, 2008 (press release 2008-2009/922).

So, the RBI acknowledges all nine designs, but regularly fails to distinguish between copper-nickel and stainless steel. This is not just in marginal cases, even the common Basaveshwara copper-nickel version is not mentioned in the press releases. Apparently, the RBI has problems keeping track of what the coins available for distribution are made of, or they just don't care. Either way, my point is: the RBI press releases cannot be used to establish which compositions might be represented among the coins they put into circulation.

5 rupees 2006 Mahatma Basaveshwara (copper-nickel). Based on the RBI press releases, this common(ish) coin should not exist.

   "Bimat" has also noticed a problem with the RBI keeping track of what their coins are made of.6 He writes:

I think the official RBI Press Release goofs up the composition part: they say it's Cupro-Nickel Alloy but give the composition of Ferric Stainless Steel.. ???

Ideally, it should be Cu-Ni as the Bhagat Singh coins were minted in 2007 when Cu-Ni coins were still being struck so now I'm curious to know if asm really has a Cu-Ni variety! ;)

Aditya

   Back to the CoinsOfRepublicIndia blog. He has this to say about 5 rupees 2006 State Bank of India (copper-nickel): "As per RBI the Cupro-Nickel version of these coins were also put into circulation. However I have not yet seen these."7. The RBI doesn't mention any copper-nickel version in their press releases, so I suspect the press release he has read was actually about a different type. If it is really the case that Indian numismatists haven't seen a regular business strike of this copper-nickel type, then I suspect that it really was only issued in mint sets. If you have evidence to the contrary, then please post a picture of such a coin, either below or elsewhere, so that we might have the opportunity to have a look at it.

Relative scarcity
With regard to the relative scarcity of the eight confirmed copper-nickel types, CoinsOfRepublicIndia ranks8 them like this:

  • 5 rupees 2004 Lal Bahadur Shastri (copper-nickel): Rare.
  • 5 rupees 2005 Dandi March (copper-nickel): Very Rare.
  • 5 rupees 2006 Mahatma Basaveshwara (copper-nickel): Plenty.
  • 5 rupees 2006 Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) (copper-nickel): Very Rare.
  • 5 rupees 2006 Jagath Guru Sree Narayana Gurudev (copper-nickel): Rare.
  • 5 rupees 2007 Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak (copper-nickel): Rare.
  • 5 rupees 2007 First War of Independence (Sepoy Mutiny) (copper-nickel): Rare.

Admittedly, he is using the word 'rare' more liberally than the Standard Catalog of World Coins would do. The types that you are actually going to have a hard time finding for your collection are the 'very rare' ones. The 5 rupees 2007 Khadi and Village Industries Commission (copper-nickel) is not listed because he has not confirmed its existence. It should presumably be ranked 'very rare', using the same rarity scale.
   The scarcity (relatively speaking) of the copper-nickel coins compared to the steel coins must be caused by the mints being reluctant to make copper-nickel coins at a time when the prices on the raw materials were high, or even mints melting existing stocks of copper-nickel coins – or a combination of both factors.

Comments on other commemorative coin types from 2000-2008
A 2 rupees coin and a 5 rupees coin dated 2000 commemorating the Golden Jubilee of the Republic of India has been catalogued in Gerhard Schön's Weltmünzkatalog (no. 264 and 265, respectively). According to CoinsOfRepublicIndia, such coins were never released.9 These are also not announced by RBI press releases.
   With regard to 2 rupees 2004 150 years of telecommunications and 10 rupees 2008 300th anniversary of transfer of Sikh guruship (Gur-Ta-Gaddi), there seems to be unanimous agreement that these are numismatic products sold to collectors only and never released into circulation. They are also not announced by RBI press releases. The commemorative 2 rupees coin of 2004 was minted just as the series of eleven-sided copper-nickel 2 rupees coins (both non-commemorative and commemorative) was coming to an end, giving way to a stainless steel 2 rupees coin.

Notes
1. Beekar the Numismatist (blog): Mint error coins of India. URL: http://beekar-the-numismatist.blogspot.com/p/mint-error-coins-of-india.html.
2. CoinsOfRepublicIndia (blog): 5 Rupees - Circulation Commemorative - Part 3 - CuproNickel and Stainless Steel. URL: https://coinsofrepublicindia.blogspot.com/2011/06/5-rupees-circulation-commemorative-part_4.html.
3. Beekar the Numismatist (blog): 5 rupees circulating commemorative coin of India. URL: http://beekar-the-numismatist.blogspot.com/p/5-rupees-circulating-commemorative.html.
4. MyIndianCoins (blog): 5 rupee 50 YEARS KHADI AND VILLAGE INDUSTRIES COMMISSION. URL: http://myindiancoins.blogspot.com/2010/09/5-rupee-50-years-khadi-and-village.html.
5. The only exception to this rule that I found was a press release presenting information about a commemorative mint set issued in 2010 on the occasion of the 75th anniversary of the RBI. In other words, it was a matter that was relevant to the RBI independently of the coins themselves.
6. The case "Bimat" points to is especially egregious. He points (May 31, 2012) to a press release that erroneously said that the coins were made out of copper-nickel. Later on, the press release was revised (August 10, 2012) to omit any mention of copper-nickel. They are covering their tracks, in other words. This is a cardinal sin. Upon release, a press release becomes a historical document and should not be altered. The purpose of archiving press releases is not to inform people of what the coins are actually made of, it is to keep a record of what the public was told when the press release was originally issued – even if it later turns out to have contained incorrect information. Revising a press release after it was released is an act of document forgery.
7. CoinsOfRepublicIndia (blog): 5 Rupees - Circulation Commemorative - Part 3 - CuproNickel and Stainless Steel. URL: https://coinsofrepublicindia.blogspot.com/2011/06/5-rupees-circulation-commemorative-part_4.html.
8. Ibid.
9. CoinsOfRepublicIndia (blog): Mystery Coins - Unreleased Commemoratives - Part 1. URL: https://coinsofrepublicindia.blogspot.com/2014/06/mystery-coins-unreleased-commemoratives.html.

Offline dheer

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Re: Elusive copper-nickel commemorative coins of India, 2000-2008
« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2020, 05:40:56 AM »
Thanks for this post. Although the topic was discussed in bits and pieces earlier, this is a extremely nice post with in depth research and most comprehensive information.

Thanks again.
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A guide on Republic India Coins & Currencies

Offline Pabitra

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Re: Elusive copper-nickel commemorative coins of India, 2000-2008
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2020, 06:25:39 AM »
2004 to 2011 was a rather turbulent period for India's  numismatics.
You have covered it very well.

All the Copper Nickel coins were release issues, minted in one mint and issued. Regular issues were later issued only after the specifications for stainless steel coins were officially approved.


Some omissions

Tilak coin of 5 Rupees was released with  "Tilak ji" variant which was hastily withdrawn.

5 Rupees circulation coin with Unity in Diversity theme was issued from one mint in very limited quantity.

Offline dheer

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Re: Elusive copper-nickel commemorative coins of India, 2000-2008
« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2020, 06:28:38 AM »
Lifes been busy and have less time and access on my personal desktop.

Agree with your observation on use of rare, very liberal,  if we apply SCWC definition, none of the Indian coins would be rare. This is more of relative definition for Indian circulation strikes.

1. SBI cupro nickel, there is a press release, let me find out.
2. SBI cupro nickel has been found by few collectors but I haven't physically verified it.
3. 150 years of war of Independence, collectors insist on cupro nickel, all sample I have seen are from broken unc sets and not circulation strikes.
4. Bhagat Singh the nickel brass is technically error coins, struck on incorrect planchet.
5. The RBI press release are more to inform general public about new types of coins, so that there is no confusion when they see these being used for trade... it's a different matter very few people read them, the vast majority doesn't even know about the commemorative coins.


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A guide on Republic India Coins & Currencies

Online Figleaf

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Re: Elusive copper-nickel commemorative coins of India, 2000-2008
« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2020, 09:33:42 AM »
Another great analysis, Vincent, as well as a solid basis for dealing with common misconceptions and fruitless searches. Pulling the discussions on WoC together and systemising the knowledge and experience here against the background of comprehensive external lists makes it simpler for collectors to come up with realistic want lists. Thank you for making your work available here.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

Offline Vincent

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Re: Elusive copper-nickel commemorative coins of India, 2000-2008
« Reply #5 on: October 23, 2020, 08:35:57 PM »
Thanks to all of you for the nice comments! It's nice to know that my efforts are appreciated.

@dheer, with regard to 150th anniversary of first war of independence, have a look at this coin here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FaoaYUo8dyM&t=250s (4 min. 10 sec. in). This is surely a copper-nickel circulation strike coin.

I am intrigued by your comment "SBI cupro nickel has been found by few collectors but I haven't physically verified it.". I would be happy to believe it. It's just that verbal communication (in speech or text) is rife with misunderstandings or people getting some detail wrong. That's why I am looking for visual verification.

Offline Vincent

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Re: Elusive copper-nickel commemorative coins of India, 2000-2008
« Reply #6 on: October 24, 2020, 12:14:02 AM »
@Pabitra, I'm very interested in your argument, but I'm not sure if I understand it correctly. You seem to be saying that the copper-nickel versions are a kind of VIP issues that were not actually meant to circulate. I can see how one could arrive at that conclusion in relation to some of the copper-nickel issues, but at the same time, some of them (e.g. Basaveshwara) are so common that there would have to be a staggering number of VIPs. But I'm not sure if that's where you were going with it.

2004 to 2011 was a rather turbulent period for India's  numismatics.
You have covered it very well.

All the Copper Nickel coins were release issues, minted in one mint and issued. Regular issues were later issued only after the specifications for stainless steel coins were officially approved.


Some omissions

Tilak coin of 5 Rupees was released with  "Tilak ji" variant which was hastily withdrawn.

5 Rupees circulation coin with Unity in Diversity theme was issued from one mint in very limited quantity.

   To be clear (and for the benefit of non-Indian readers), the division of labour is such that the government issues coins and the RBI distributes them upon having received them from the mints. The government organises a little ceremony, called the release function, when they formally issue a new type of coin. At this ceremony, officials will show the new coins to the press, perhaps in the form of a mint set. (You can watch one of these ceremonies here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zXM_sok_R7I; the first 30 seconds will give you the general idea). From that moment on, the RBI is free to release the coins into circulation, and when they do so, they issue a press release. In some cases, the RBI will release coins into circulation immediately after the release function. In other cases there's a delay, perhaps because the RBI hasn't received the coins from the mints yet. In the case of the nine types currently under discussion, there is always a delay, although the delay in the case of the Tilak coin was only three months. Now, it would stand to reason to think that the coins dispatched from the mints to the RBI around the time of the government's release function would be of the same composition (and perhaps also be similar in other respects) as the coins presented at the ceremony (because they were minted simultaneously), whereas coins minted later could be of a different composition, because the mints had switched to stainless steel in the mean time.
   So, I'll juxtapose the dates of the government's release ceremonies (release functions) and the dates of the RBI's press releases, announcing the release of the coins into circulation by the RBI. I'll list the coin types chronologically based on the first RBI press release for each coin.

5 rupees 2007 Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak:
Government ceremony: July 23rd, 2007.
RBI press release: October 31st, 2007 (copper-nickel).

5 rupees 2007 First War of Independence (Sepoy Mutiny):
Government ceremony: April 18th, 2007 [correction:] April 18th, 2008.
RBI press release: November 12th, 2007 (copper-nickel) and December 18th, 2008 (steel).

5 rupees 2005 Dandi March:
Government ceremony: October 4th, 2005 [correction:] October 2nd, 2005.
RBI press release: July 18th, 2008 (steel).

5 rupees 2006 Mahatma Basaveshwara:
Government ceremony: June 23rd, 2006.
RBI press release: July 18th, 2008 (steel).

5 rupees 2004 Lal Bahadur Shastri:
Government ceremony: October 4th, 2004 [correction:] October 4th, 2005.
RBI press release: October 1st, 2008 (steel).

5 rupees 2006 State Bank of India:
Government ceremony: June 23rd, 2006 [correction:] May 30th, 2006.
RBI press release: October 1st, 2008 (steel).

5 rupees 2006 Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC):
Government ceremony: August 14th, 2006.
RBI press release: October 1st, 2008 (steel).

5 rupees 2007 Khadi and Village Industries Commission:
Government ceremony: November 19th, 2007.
RBI press releases: October 24th, 2008 (copper-nickel and steel).

5 rupees 2006 Jagath Guru Sree Narayana Gurudev:
Government ceremony: September 7th, 2006.
RBI press releases: November 26th, 2008 (steel) and December 31st, 2008 (copper-nickel).

   So, here's what I make of this. When the government launches a new coin type, the RBI reacts by issuing a press release, announcing that the coins are going into circulation – but they only do so once they actually have the coins in their vaults. In the early RBI press releases (October 31st, 2007 and November 12th, 2007), copper-nickel is given as the composition of the coins in the press releases. Beginning July 18th, 2008, stainless steel is generally given as the composition of the coins. I think this reflects general information from the mints to the RBI about what the coins are made out of, and this information is what is reflected in the RBI press releases. Coins that "ought" to be made of copper-nickel (based on the RBI press release), but are actually made out of steel, must then have been made after the original press release. Coins that "ought" to be made of steel (based on the RBI press release), but are actually made out of copper-nickel, must then have been early batches, made before the switch-over to steel. At the point in time when the RBI issued its press release, they would have been unaware that not all coins dispatched from the mints conform to what the RBI says in their press release (i.e. steel), based on the information they got from the mints. In some cases the RBI has become aware of the issue and duly issued a second press release to make sure that everything is accounted for. As the coins trickle in from the mints at the RBI vaults, crates of copper-nickel coins and steel coins sit side by side. In some cases the copper-nickel coins are numerous and in other cases they are few. They are all gradually released into circulation. In this way we end up with the distribution pattern we currently see: all – or almost all – types could be found in circulation, the steel coins being the most common and the copper-nickel coins being capriciously affected to varying and disparate degrees by the slowdown in the production of copper-nickel coins due to the developments in production costs.
« Last Edit: October 27, 2020, 08:33:28 PM by Vincent »

Offline Pabitra

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Re: Elusive copper-nickel commemorative coins of India, 2000-2008
« Reply #7 on: October 24, 2020, 04:27:29 AM »
Not always a VIP issue.
The organisation holding the release function decides how many VIP sets are to be made, using proof quality and how many are to be sold to persons attending the release function.

In many cases, such release functions are public functions whereas in some cases, it is restricted to invitees.

If I recollect correctly, the Tilak coin release function was held in Pune and as soon as the coin was released, there was chaos as persons attending the release function objected to legend " Tilak ji". The organisers, who had brought 2,00,000 coins, withheld the balance coins from issuing and got them melted but the mint gave them revised legend " Tilak" Copper Nickel coins. You have not been able to find Tilak steel coin release date?

Even a steel coin of Bhagat singh was withheld from distribution due to political party objection.The release function was held on 27 Sept 2008 but the coins could be issued only on 21 Feb 2012. By that time, the specifications of 5 Rupees had been changed to Nickel Brass.

Such incidents are a norm in India.

Mysore University coin was released in Mysore and sold to attendees at face value. This circulation quality coin was available in the subsequent Bangalore coin show for 30 Rupees but within a year it was quoted between 700- 1000 Rupees. The actual issue came out after a gap of 3 years.

The only difference between copper Nickel and Stainless steel pairs is that release quantity was much less and issue quantity much larger.

In case of Shastri coin, the steel coin was minted first with dies made for Copper nickel blanks whereas after finding the strike poor, much deeper dies were made and issue coins were made with much higher relief.

I did this study in 2007 when DGM (Public Relations ) of Security Printing and minting corporation actually referred the case to law ministry to check if the approval for copper nickel coins could be treated as approval for stainless steel coins, without violating sovereign laws of the land.




Offline Vincent

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Re: Elusive copper-nickel commemorative coins of India, 2000-2008
« Reply #8 on: October 24, 2020, 09:47:15 AM »
Ah – I think you're making some very interesting points, especially that the number of Tilakji coins brough to the release function was 200,000. I'm happy to accept that the circulation of copper-nickel commemorative coins from this time period (2004-08) is partially explained by large amounts of such coins being made available at puplic events without the involvement of the RBI.
   I suppose one thing that makes this particularly complicated is that there must be more than one explanation at work here. For instance, the Tilak copper-nickel coin was flat out released by the RBI on October 31st, 2007 (although a batch of the same coin would have also been released at the release function on July 23rd, 2007).
   Would you agree that in some cases the circulation of copper-nickel versions of the 2004-08 coin types is reasonably explained by the release of coins at release functions, and in other cases (like the Tilak coin) the RBI simply just had two different versions (copper-nickel and steel) of the same coin, in which case the release funktion is not the primary explanation for the availability of copper-nickel versions in circulation. Because if we agree on that, then it's mostly a question of which explanation applies to which coin.
   To answer your question: no, I have not seen a press release announcing the Tilak steel coin. The RBI does not have such a press release on their website.
   I realise that in some cases, like the Mysore University coin, there are some differences between the coins released at the release function and coins made available for circulation later. This is why there's a distinction between 'first strike' and 'second strike' varieties. There's a 1 rupee commemorative coin from Sri Lanka from 1978 where some similar circumstances caused there to be two varieties of it.

Offline Bimat

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Elusive copper-nickel commemorative coins of India, 2000-2008
« Reply #9 on: October 24, 2020, 10:36:41 AM »
Ah – I think you're making some very interesting points, especially that the number of Tilakji coins brough to the release function was 200,000. I'm happy to accept that the circulation of copper-nickel commemorative coins from this time period (2004-08) is partially explained by large amounts of such coins being made available at puplic events without the involvement of the RBI.

When those copper-nickel varieties of the ₹5 commemorative coins were just "invented", I used to see them with practically every coin dealer in the coin shows and they were not much expensive either (About ₹300-₹500 per coin if I remember correctly). I did not buy them as I had little or no interest in Indian coins back then and I am not sure how expensive or difficult to find those are today, since I haven't been to a single coin show since 2017.

When the famous Tilakji coin was just reported, I remember one dealer selling it for ₹25,000 at a coin show. The prices came down drastically in coming years and I believe you can buy one now for less than ₹3000. The mistake was apparently pointed out by an Maharashtra cadre IAS officer who was present at the ceremony where then Prime Minister was the main guest, and withdrawal orders were immediately issued.

Aditya
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Offline Vincent

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Re: Elusive copper-nickel commemorative coins of India, 2000-2008
« Reply #10 on: October 24, 2020, 03:02:44 PM »
Here's a picture to illustrate a point.

5 rupees 2006 Gurudev (copper-nickel).

How did this particular specimen end up in the numismatic market? We can't know, but there are two possibilities:
1) The release function was held September 7th, 2006. Some copper-nickel coins would have been made available on that occasion.
2) The RBI announced in a press release dated December 31st, 2008, that they were releasing the copper-nickel version of the Gurudev coin into circulation imminently. The coin above could have been emitted on that occasion.
So, there are two different ways in which this coin could have been emitted, and we need to take both into account in our analysis of what these copper-nickel 5 rupee coins are and how they became available to the public.

Offline dheer

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Re: Elusive copper-nickel commemorative coins of India, 2000-2008
« Reply #11 on: October 24, 2020, 05:13:07 PM »


@dheer, with regard to 150th anniversary of first war of independence, have a look at this coin here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FaoaYUo8dyM&t=250s (4 min. 10 sec. in). This is surely a copper-nickel circulation strike coin.

I am intrigued by your comment "SBI cupro nickel has been found by few collectors but I haven't physically verified it.". I would be happy to believe it. It's just that verbal communication (in speech or text) is rife with misunderstandings or people getting some detail wrong. That's why I am looking for visual verification.

The ONGC, SBI, khadi in the video are broken from sets. The war of independence looks like circulation strike; more images needed... for 1000% surety...
SBI i did see few collectors put it up for sale and from images they seem circulation strikes. The deal to buy didn't go through and the collector never shipped the coin.
So I think it exists quite confident in the belief...
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Offline dheer

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Re: Elusive copper-nickel commemorative coins of India, 2000-2008
« Reply #12 on: October 24, 2020, 05:17:13 PM »
Tilakji are in plenty with most dealers... the price is depending upon what you want to pay.... you can get it for  600 or 700 if you don't want to buy :)
A good dealer sold it to me for 2500; but was offering it to my friend who is more into Maratha coins for 700... it's trying to get max from a buyer...
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Offline Pabitra

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Re: Elusive copper-nickel commemorative coins of India, 2000-2008
« Reply #13 on: October 24, 2020, 06:54:28 PM »

   I realise that in some cases, like the Mysore University coin, there are some differences between the coins released at the release function and coins made available for circulation later. This is why there's a distinction between 'first strike' and 'second strike' varieties.


Only in case of Mysore University, there is this definition of "first strike". I have not heard of this in earlier or subsequent coins. I do not find any difference in Mumbai mint Mysore University coins which are now available in plenty

Offline Pabitra

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Re: Elusive copper-nickel commemorative coins of India, 2000-2008
« Reply #14 on: October 24, 2020, 07:03:08 PM »
In addition, SPMCIL was formed in January 2006 and all coins were subsequently minted only with MoU signed for commercial terms signed between Ministry of Finance and SPMCIL.
Thus, apart from release coins in Copper Nickel, no 5 Rupees coins were minted till MoU got signed with clear indication of coins to be minted with revised specifications of stainless steel.
All of them practically got issued simultaneously in  July, October and December 2008.