Bitcoin and Crypto Assets Definitely Not Banned in India

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Good news for Indian Bitcoin owners – the leading cryptocurrency in the world is definitely not banned in the Asian country. The Reserve Bank of India AKA India’s central bank has officially declared Bitcoin and crypto-assets “not banned”. India’s citizens can hold, store, invest, and trade cryptocurrencies from now on. It’s a major win for Bitcoin and cryptos, although some experts aren’t banking their hopes on it. According to some, this doesn’t make cryptos legal – it just officially recognizes their value.

The news comes after a period of uncertainty for cryptocurrencies in India. For a long time, no one knew exactly how legal cryptos were. The RBI has previously banned crypto businesses although localized crypto exchanges and certain businesses were active. Now that crypto activities are legal, crypto businesses in India including Bitcoin casinos can thrive.

A Big Step Forward for Bitcoin

BRI’s statement came in a response to a petition from the IAMAI – the Internet and Mobile Association of India. The organization filed a petition to reconsider a crucial 2018 document by the BRI which regulated businesses not to deal in cryptocurrencies. Numerous Indian cryptocurrency exchanges are part of this organization and their businesses were hindered by the 2018 circular.

As soon as it was released, IAMAI contacted India’s Supreme Court. They sought clarification on the state of cryptos in India and got their response at a hearing earlier this month. As the IAMAI argued, dealing in cryptos in the absence of a law that bans them makes them automatically legal. The circular, however, prohibited such activity, putting their profits on the line.

The Reserve Bank of India fired a quick response claiming that virtual currencies are not banned in the Asian country. It has only ring-fenced certain activities to reduce the risk of wrongdoing. Many have praised the move by the RBI, but others aren’t so sure. Although the RBI’s statement clears the air in India in regards to crypto operations, there’s still uncertainty over these dealings.

The Government May Continue to Crack Down on Crypto Operations

Experts believe that RBI’s statement doesn’t change much in regards to Bitcoin. Under the pretence of money laundering, the government may still crack down on crypto operations including Bitcoin gambling. Crypto online gaming is very popular in India. Even though the law is unclear on it, Indian players can play Bitcoin games at numerous foreign casinos that accept cryptos.

Then there’s the possibility that cryptocurrencies will be banned in the future. The affidavit noted that VSs are constantly being used to purchase illegal and illicit goods, so it could act swiftly to ban certain businesses.

Although the RBI has officially declared virtual currencies as “not banned”, there’s a lot of work ahead. IAMAI members are still waiting on official clarification of the statement and the court hearings are not over yet. Still, it’s a large win overall for Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies that could see the crypto economy in the Asian country thrive.

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February 19, 2020: • No Comments

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