Government Plans to Ban ‘Private CryptoCurrencies’ In India, Create Official Digital Currency

The government has listed a bill that will prohibit “all private cryptocurrencies” in India and provide a framework for creation of an official digital currency to be issued by the Reserve Bank of India. Titled “The Cryptocurrency and Regulation of Official Digital Currency Bill, 2021,” the bill will be considered in the ongoing Budget session of Parliament. The RBI is already exploring the possibility of issuing a digital version of the rupee that could eventually come as the country’s central bank digital currency (CBDC) — based on the technological background of cryptocurrencies.Shivam Thakral, CEO, BuyUcoin, urged the government to take opinion of all the stakeholders before taking a decision.“We will engage with our peers and other stakeholders to work towards protecting the interest of the industry,” Thakral said in a prepared statement. “We look forward to a constructive dialogue with the government to reach a consensus on creating a positive digital asset ecosystem in India.”Alongside seeking a way to prohibit cryptocurrencies to some extent, the government is currently exploring the potential of a digital version of the rupee. The RBI noted in a booklet issued earlier this week that it was exploring the possibility as to whether there is a need for a digital version of fiat currency and in case there is, then how to operationalise it.