Cryptocurrencies might become legitimate in India, says report
It’s been 10 long years since its inception, but to many, the cryptocurrency industry still seems to be in its nascent stage. While cryptocurrencies captured the imagination of everyone when Bitcoin reached the intoxicating highs in December last year, it has been a downward slope since then. Countries across the globe have been embraced the technology underlying cryptocurrencies, blockchain with open arms, but they have been more circumspect in their approach towards cryptocurrencies.
Lack of regulatory framework in place has been the main impediment in wider adoption of cryptocurrencies. While countries like China have been proactive and come down heavily on cryptos, other countries like India are still not sure about the future and are grappling with ways to adopt cryptos.
The uncertainty surrounding cryptocurrencies in India is still very much in place and there is still no clarity about the scope and role of cryptocurrencies in India. Due to the lack of regulatory framework in place, there is a ban on cryptocurrency trading in India. But it seems that things might change, according to a report published by The New Indian Express.
A source close to the daily says, “We have already had two meetings. There is a general consensus that cryptocurrency cannot be dismissed as completely illegal. It needs to be legalized with strong riders. Deliberations are on. We will have more clarity soon.”
It seems that things are moving in the right direction and the committee seems to have met twice and will submit the report to the Finance Ministry by February next year.
As per the report, the government set up the first interdisciplinary committee led by special secretary Dinesh Sharma (now retired) with members from CBDT, Ministry of Home Affairs, MeitY (Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology), RBI, NITI Aayog and SBI in March 2017.
Soon after that, Reserve Bank of India (RBI ) came out with a circular that banned all banks and regulatory authorities from having business relations with firms that deal with cryptocurrencies. They were directed to end all relations with the exchanges on or before July 5.
After hearing conflicting opinions the government set up another committee, which is led by the Department of Economic Affairs secretary Subhash Chandra Garg. Other members of the committee include Executive Director, Ganesh Kumar and other finance ministry officials. They are expected to give insights they gained from international deliberations in their report. The report is expected to be tabled in January next year.
“We have also taken inputs from crypto exchanges and will be examining legal implications with the law ministry. It’s a complicated issue and once all things are determined we will have more clarity,” the official added.
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