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India’s PM Favors Blockchain Amidst Even NSE Awaits for Crypto Clarity

Written by: Qadir AK

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Qadir AK

Qadir Ak is the founder of Coinpedia. He has over a decade of experience writing about technology and has been covering the blockchain and cryptocurrency space since 2010. He has also interviewed a few prominent experts within the cryptocurrency space.

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Jul 23, 2020

Article Highlights
  • The Prime minister of India invited investors to invest in the ‘frontier technologies’ including Blockchain.

  • Shiv Kumar Bhasin, CTO/COO, NSE India, said that the regulators believe it's good to invest in emerging technologies like crypto no matter whether they are regulated or not.

  • Indian crypto space witnesses a spur of movement as the authorities become proactive with the country’s crypto regulations

PM Modi Favors Blockchain

During a virtual conference, “India Ideas Summit”, organized by the U.S-India Business Council, Prime Minister Narendra Modi emphasized on the growing internet adoption in the country. He includes Blockchain technology under the list of frontier technologies that the country should look at.

“ Half of a billion people in the country have already been connected to the internet and another half awaits the same, presenting an opportunity for companies to expand into a large market, said Mr.Modi

Calling for the investment in India, the PM said that India has huge potential for frontier technologies like 5G, IoT, big data analytics, quantum computing, and blockchain. 

While the country’s crypto leaders are appreciating Mr.Modi’s view on the blockchain, they are also hoping to see favorable crypto regulations. However, it is not the first time that any Indian government official spoke in favor of blockchain. The then finance minister of India, Late Mr. Arun Jatiely too had said on records that blockchain could be implemented in the banking sector but cryptocurrencies cannot be considered legal.

India Awaits Crypto Regulations

The CTO and COO of National Stock Exchange, Shiv Kumar Bhasin in Quartz live event organized by TCS on the topic ‘The New Age Crypto World’ said that India has yet to look into the crypto compliance. TCS or Tata Consultancy Services is a part of the Tata group which is the country’s largest multinational business group. TCS’s crypto service launch announcement is viewed as the big move as it is listed on two stock exchanges in India.

Talking on the position of the cryptocurrencies in India, Mr. Bhasin said that some of the exchanges like Swiss and Malta exchanges are working on the digitalization of asset classes and also on tokenization. But in India, there is a lack of social awareness of these concepts and due to which, the regulation of cryptos might have been unhurried and unrushed.

However, he acknowledged that the banking regulators of India, RBI has not accepted cryptocurrencies yet. He also adds that the regulators, however, feel that one should invest in the emerging technologies, regardless of whether they are regulated or not. Emphasizing on the need to invest in the technology, he said,

“Crypto is not approved by our banking regulator RBI. They say that Crypto is not acceptable in India, but you keep investing in terms of technology so that on maturity, the technologies become more advanced when complying with the legal framework.”

Some Indian Banks Ignore Supreme Court Verdict on Crypto Ban

The latest developments in the crypto space within the country and the world has given birth to the speculation and hopes. Many of the crypto enthusiasts in India however, feel that the government now has to look into the matter.

Recently, the US regulators OCC allowed the banks of the country to offer the crypto custody service to their customers and China too integrated a state-backed network with six public blockchains in the world. Hence developments in the crypto and blockchain space have led to a rise of new hopes in the country with respect to cryptocurrency regulation.

On the other side, some of the banks in India such as Axis and Kotak Mahindra Bank are reluctant to even offer banking services to those dealing in cryptocurrencies. This is quite surprising as the country’s Apex Court had already overturned the banking ban in early March this year. That being said, community members are yelling at the bank’s behavior of calling and sending them letters, requesting to acknowledge that they should not deal with cryptocurrency citing RBI guidance as a source. 

Court Verdict on Crypto Ban

Crypto as Commodity in India

Very recently, Mr. Subash Chandra Garg, Ex-Finance Secretary of India, in a webinar states that cryptos can be regulated as commodities but not as currency. Some of the Indian community members were surprised by Mr.Garg’s statement because the committee under his leadership proposed a ‘crypto ban with hefty charges and penalties’ back in 2019. While he is now quite open on how crypto can be regulated in the country, Alas, his views have no bearing on the Govt. decision anymore. On the other hand, despite the country’s shady crypto environment, India’s crypto trading volume on P2P exchanges skyrocketed.  

While PM Modi Favors Blockchain, India is hoping for crypto regulations soon.! So readers, what’s your view on the current happening in India?

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Qadir AK

Qadir Ak is the founder of Coinpedia. He has over a decade of experience writing about technology and has been covering the blockchain and cryptocurrency space since 2010. He has also interviewed a few prominent experts within the cryptocurrency space.

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