India Puts Country’s Future of Finance Fate Up for Grabs by Contemplating Complete Bitcoin Ban in 2019

Will India Outright Ban Cryptos In 2019?

India has been a tricky place when it comes to regulating crypto. They had been one of the best organically growing markets in the world until the country's Supreme Court decided on a banking ban. There were rumors of the government trying to reverse the verdict, however, it looks like the situation is about to get more dreadful in India. Rumors of an outright ban are in the air.

A government official aware of the details told Economics Times that the “Banning of Cryptocurrencies and Regulation of Official Digital Currencies Bill 2019” draft has been circulated to relevant government departments.

Many government departments including the Department of Economic Affairs (DEA), Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) and the Investor Education and Protection Fund Authority (IEPFA) have endorsed the idea of a complete ban on the “sale, purchase and issuance of all types of cryptocurrency.”

In February, the Apex court in India had passed a deadline of four weeks for the Government to come with complete cryptocurrency regulations. Moreover, a committee under the Government with representatives from various ministries under Finance Secretary, Shubash Chandra Garg was drafting the bill since 2018.

Reflecting on the matter, Varun Sethi, founder of Blockchain Lawyer, a firm that claims to advice blockchain-focused firms on legal compliance and systems design, reemphasized that:

“During elections in India, ‘aachar Sanhita’ or code of conduct applies. In essence, no new law can be passed, and as such, we do not expect the government to make any official announcement regarding crypto regulation or others.”

Although not everyone thinks that these efforts by the government carries much merit Nischal Shetty, the co-founder of WazirX, who leads the movement to call for the reverse of the ban took to Twitter to say:

“Don't jump to conclusions about India banning crypto based on a news report. The government has to submit its recommendations to the Supreme Court case and the next hearing is in July. Don't panic & together we'll make things right for crypto in India.”

He even addressed this issue to the Prime Minister of India.

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