Indian government prepares to ban Bitcoin BTC





The Indian government will introduce a bill that could ban the use of 'private cryptocurrencies' such as Bitcoin (BTC).

The law also provides for the creation of a national digital currency issued by the Central Bank of India.



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Banning Bitcoin

Cryptocurrency holders in India were caught off guard and left in confusion after the announcement on Friday, January 29, that the country's parliament would consider a government-backed bill that could ban the use of 'private crypto-currencies'. Since the ruling party controls both Houses of Parliament, the chances of this bill passing would be quite high.

According to observers, the definition of the term 'private' given by the
government could imply that all non-sovereign cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin, could be affected by the ban. Nischal Shetty, P.-D.G. from WazirX, a Mumbai-based cryptocurrency exchange, explained, “A country as large as India should at least make an effort to understand the underlying terminologies before presenting any bills related to technology, it seems like a rushed step ”.

At the same time, the bill proposes the creation of a rupee
that would be issued by the Central Bank of India, joining a growing list of countries exploring the subject.



India and cryptocurrencies, a long history

The Indian government has a complicated relationship with cryptocurrencies. The law the government is trying to introduce is only the latest episode in a long saga.

In April 2018, authorities asked financial institutions to stop serving individuals and businesses that dealt with cryptocurrencies. The country's Supreme Court then overturned that decision in March 2020, meaning Indians could once again buy and sell Bitcoin.

In addition, the old bill dating from June 2020 was deemed particularly harsh. Indeed, the government had proposed a 10-year prison sentence for cryptocurrency traders. The new 2021 bill does not mention such a sanction.

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