The Indian Rupee has a symbol. Unlike many other things that have changed name in India in the past two decades, this seems like a move forward. One would have thought that the powers that be might have toyed with the idea of changing the currency’s name given our penchant for change (sic).
Thankfully, however, the symbol is all that has been added. Why?
The growing influence of the Indian economy in the global space is said to have prompted this move that will result in the Indian rupee joining the select club of global currencies like the US dollar, the British Pound, European Euro and Japanese Yen that have unique symbols.
So says NDTV anyways.
It seems like a good idea to have a symbol, but the chosen symbol may take some getting used to. It’s a Devnagari “R” with a strikethrough-like line running through it. Not too dissimilar to the Yen’s lines. At first sight, it looks nice. But then one wonders if the winning choice (yes, it was a contest) was to make it easier to fit in. Every major symbol (dollar, euro, yen, pound) has a line running through it. While the dollar has an interesting history, the Euro was devised when EU came out with one uniform currency.
The origin of the “$” sign has been variously accounted for. Perhaps the most widely accepted explanation is that it is the result of the evolution of the Spanish and Mexican scribal abbreviation “ps” for pesos. This theory, derived from a study of late eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century manuscripts, explains that the s gradually came to be written over the p developing a close equivalent to the “$” mark.”
What legacy is the Rupee sign going to have?Moreover, how soon will it be accepted across India and the world? I tried writing it and boy, will be see variations!