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India May Regulate Cryptocurrencies Instead of An Outright Ban

December 26, 2018 15:49
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The cryptocurrency community was down in the dumps when it was announced recently, that the Indian government was planning to entirely disallow traders and investors from holding any kind of cryptocurrency. It was further perpetuated by one of the longest running bear markets that has been seen in the recent past.

In a recent report by CNBC-TV18, there were indications that the government may consider banning cryptocurrencies. As earlier reported by Crypto-News India, the panel headed by Economic Affairs Secretary Subhash Chandra Garg had recommended a new law to regulate cryptocurrencies. And that new law recommending banning cryptocurrencies completely.

At the time, the report had said, “The law should enlist punitive measures that the government and its investigative agencies can take in case it finds anyone or any entity trading or dealing/ holding it.”

However, a second meeting held by the panel suggests a more lenient stance on cryptocurrencies. As per a report published by news portal New Indian Express, an anonymous source who was privy to the panel’s discussion said, “We have already had two meetings. There is a general consensus that cryptocurrency cannot be dismissed as completely illegal. It needs to be legalised with strong riders. Deliberations are on. We will have more clarity soon.” The committee has met twice on the issue and is likely to submit its report to the finance ministry by February next, the news portal noted.

The change in stance is fairly interesting, given that recently India was part of the G20 summit, where along with other countries, it pledged to regulate cryptocurrencies as per the guidelines laid down by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).

Section 25 of the guidelines said, “We will continue to monitor and, if necessary, tackle emerging risks and vulnerabilities in the financial system; and, through continued regulatory and supervisory cooperation, address fragmentation. We look forward to continued progress on achieving resilient non-bank financial intermediation. We will step up efforts to ensure that the potential benefits of technology in the financial sector can be realized while risks are mitigated. We will regulate crypto-assets for anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism in line with FATF standards and we will consider other responses as needed. We thank Mr. Mark Carney for his service as FSB Chair and we welcome the appointment of Mr. Randal K Quarles, as Chair of the FSB and of Mr. Klaas Knot, as Vice Chair.”

While this is definitely welcome news, we’ll know more on this by January when the Supreme Court reviews the counter affidavit filed by the Union of India.

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