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Crypto Ban in India: Will the govt bypass via ordinance?

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The Indian government might propose the cryptocurrency bill through ordinance process.

Resembling an executive order in the US, the President of India, on behalf of the cabinet, may put forward an ordinance law. As a result, it would be equivalent to an act of parliament.

According to a report by CNBC-TV18 on Friday, the government is pressing to pass the “Cryptocurrency and Regulation of Official Digital Currency Bill 2021” within a month of clearance of the ordinance. In addition to that, the report also mentioned that the PMO’s office and Finance Ministry, and the Cabinet secretariat have started preparing the draft details of the ordinance.

Arrival of the bill could kick off the development of a “domestic digital currency”. That would lead to banning “private cryptocurrencies,” as per previous reports.

If things go along this way, it poses a major threat to the nation’s crypto industry because recently it has seen substantial growth after overturn of RBI’s ban on cryptos last year.

Crypto exchanges have taken notice of that, and many of them have started their campaigns to avert the potential ban of “private cryptocurrencies”.

In a reply to a question in Rajya Sabha whether central government is planning to issue strict guidelines on cryptocurrency trading, finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman  said, “A high-level Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) constituted under the Chairmanship of Secretary (Economic Affairs) to study the issues related to virtual currencies and propose specific actions to be taken in the matter recommended in its report that all private cryptocurrencies, except any virtual currencies issued by state, will be prohibited in India.”

“The central government will take a decision on the recommendation of IMC and legislative proposal, if any would be introduced in the Parliament following the due process,” finance minister added.

Minister of state for finance Anurag Singh Thakur said earlier. “Regulatory bodies like RBI and Sebi etc also don’t have a legal framework to directly regulate cryptocurrencies as they are neither currencies nor assets or securities or commodities issued by an identifiable user. :

He added, “The existing laws are inadequate to deal with the subject. The government had formed an inter-ministerial committee and the committee has given a report. Post that there was a meeting of the empowered technology group which happened earlier. The committee of secretaries which was chaired by the cabinet secretary has also its given their report. The bill is being finalised and will be sent to the cabinet soon. So we will be bringing the bill soon.”

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