Indian entrepreneur and founder of BEGIN Think Tank, Deepak Kapoor, calls on the countries' financial authorities and government to implement regulations on the cryptocurrency space in a bid to prevent the illicit use of the “innovative technology.”
Speaking to BusinessWorld on Monday, in a panel shared by Ratan Sharda, noted Author, Editor, and TV Panelist, Kapoor further said cryptocurrencies should be treated in a similar bracket to company securities or stocks.
India’s total ban on cryptocurrency, stipulated by the Reserve Bank of India, was quashed earlier this year as the Supreme Court ruled it unconstitutional. Ratan echoed the Supreme Court decision as final, stating the current bill in parliament looking to affect the total ban “will not work” in its current state.
“Just like you cannot ban porn, you cannot ban cryptocurrency.”
A better view would be to place controls on the market and ecosystem, the author stated.
Nonetheless, the privatization of Bitcoin (and similar cryptocurrencies) will not be accepted by governments any time soon, Kapoor shared. Controls will only effect a smooth transition into digital payments, but acceptance of private cryptocurrencies could generally collapse economies, he explained.
“Globally, everyone wants to make bitcoin into a private currency, which will not be allowed because it will lead to the collapse of the economies.”
Kapoor praised cryptocurrencies as a technology that cannot be hacked but warned legalizing Bitcoin and private currencies “might put the entire economy of the country at risk.”
How should the government control and regulate these new innovative digital assets?
According to the think tank CEO, Bitcoin should be treated similarly as stocks or company securities. He further stated,
“That is the only legal status that it can get, and it should get this status. This could be the most secure technology cryptographically that we have ever seen in our lifetimes.”
India’s monumental Supreme Court decision to destroy the blanket ban on crypto opened up the country to a new wave of interest in these digital assets. However, Kapoor believes the country should be doing more on the regulation side of things to curb cybercrime using Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies.
“We do not even have cryptocurrency crimes as a category of crimes registered in the country. Let us start acknowledging that first,” he said. “I would want senior people from investigative and law enforcement agencies to first at least know about it and to know what the world is moving towards.”
He called on the government to introduce a body specifically looking into virtual assets or give the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) the mandate over these assets.
India’s regulation on cryptocurrencies is still miles off peer countries. Since February’s ruling on the lift on the total crypto ban, the RBI has given contradictory statements on what is legal and what isn’t. In May, the central bank announced it had not prohibited any banking services from conducting business with crypto service providers despite reports it had done so.