The days where people could freely mine and use cryptocurrencies in India may be over. According to reports, a committee has advised the Indian government to ban the use of cryptocurrencies inside their territory. Without a doubt, dark days lie ahead for Indian enthusiasts.
Obviously, this is bad news for any person located in India regularly using cryptocurrencies. The ban means that any activity relying on the use of crypto will be illegal. The enaction of this law would mean that anyone living in India doing crypto transactions or moreover just possessing cryptocurrency may suffer legal consequences for doing so. This includes prison time, fines and other penalties.
The Indian Government’s Draft Bill
“The draft bill proposed by the panel suggested penalty or imprisonment for those who directly or indirectly mine, generate, hold, sell, deal in, transfer, dispose of or issues cryptocurrency for issuing cryptocurrency-related financial products; issuing cryptocurrency as a means of raising funds; as a means for investment; as a payment system, buy or sell or store cryptocurrency; provide cryptocurrency-related services to consumers or investors which includes registering, trading, settling, clearing or other services; trade cryptocurrency with Indian currency or any foreign currency as a basis of credit.” –Bloombergquint
An Indian government committee ruled by Subhash Chandra Garg, a finance secretary, drew a draft called “Banning of Cryptocurrency and Regulation of Official Digital Currency Bill, 2019”. The draft prohibits the use of cryptocurrencies for profit. Hence, they will only be legal for academic and research purposes.
Committee is very receptive and supportive of distributed ledger technologies and recommends its widespread use in delivering financial services. It also opens up door for a possible official digital rupee. Private crypto currencies are of no real value. Rightly banned.
— Subhash Chandra Garg (@Subhashgarg1960) July 22, 2019
The panel also suggested in the draft the creation of a group responsible for developing and analyzing the creation of a government-backed cryptocurrency. Garg claims that private coins have no real value and because of this, it’s okay for the Indian government to ban them.
The Future of Indian Cryptocurrency
It’s currently unknown what lies ahead in the future of the Indian cryptocurrency scene. However, by the looks of it, things don’t look very good for those who participate in the market today; the Indian government wants to control the industry and ban competition. Thus, this may be bad news for crypto enthusiasts all over the world, as negative news from one country can cause price drops across the market. Other nearby governments may also decide to follow India’s lead, given its economic influence.
Governments all over the world are anxious to get their hands on the cryptocurrency market. It’s currently a way for people to invest and trade without paying taxes, so naturally, governments are seeking to end (or at least, regulate) the growing sector. If the Indian government moves forward, they will lead the pack, restricting crypto more heavily than any other major country.