Indian regulators have been strict and conservative when it comes to Cryptocurrency, it seems they will be continuing the same outlook while evolving the regulatory framework surrounding cryptocurrencies in the country. The panel in charge of with providing recommendations for the regulatory framework of crypto assets has submitted their draft and the same is being scrutinized under strong regulations. A recent report suggested that “There is a general consensus that cryptocurrency cannot be dismissed as completely illegal.” An article published by the New Indian Express on Wednesday asserts that the second inter-ministerial committee appointed to discuss India’s stance on cryptocurrencies does not completely support outlawing them, they feel that digital assets should be legalized under strong regulations. Headed by the Department of Economic Affairs’ secretary, Subhash Chandra Garg, the committee consists of officials from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), the Securities and Exchange Board of India, and the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology. An unnamed official was quoted by the publication as saying:
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
India’s stance of Cryptocurrency
In February, the finance minister, Arun Jaitley, stated in a speech that the Indian government “does not consider cryptocurrencies as legal tender or coin”, vowing that necessary measures will be taken to “eliminate the use of these assets in financing illegitimate activities.” The central bank of India, RBI also took a similar stance and in April issued a circular that asked all banking institutions under its control to pull off all ties with cryptocurrency companies, within a three-month window. The banking ban has definitely affected cryptocurrency trading behaviors in India. To circumvent the ban, cryptocurrency exchanges have switched or introduced peer-to-peer (P2P) trading. Notably, even with uncertainity, the daily trading volumes are reportedly soared in the months following the decision. In fact, even the bear market hasn’t affected it, the CEO of a local cryptocurrency exchange, WazirX reports that record trading volumes have been recorded past few months. While the government of India is still deciding over their formal stance on the matter, the Indian crypto community remains optimistic. The next meeting of the committee is scheduled for January 2019.