India Crypto Ban

The India Crypto ban isn’t being wholly accepted across the country. The community of cryptocurrency users and blockchain technology enthusiasts have decided to speak out against the decision by the Reserve Bank of India that could endanger crypto trading across the country:

“Virtual Currencies (VCs), also variously referred to as cryptocurrencies and crypto assets, raise concerns of consumer protection, market integrity, and money laundering, among others (…) In view of the associated risks, it has been decided that, with immediate effect, entities regulated by RBI shall not deal with or provide services to any individual or business entities dealing with or settling VCs. Regulated entities which already provide such services shall exit the relationship within a specified time. A circular in this regard is being issued separately.”

The petition was launched on the popular online activism site Change.org 4 days ago by representatives of the Indian Exchange Bitbns with the expectation of bringing together 25,000 supporters. However, in just four days of existence, they have already managed to surpass the milestone of 20,000 people.

“Make India at the forefront of Blockchain Applications revolution” is the title of this controversial paper, which strongly criticizes the government’s position on cryptocurrencies. A reaction that according to the signatories has been described as “irrational.”

They also mention that while the RBI (Central Bank of India) prohibits people from using and working with cryptos, on the other hand, they are evaluating the possibility of creating their own virtual currency. This contradictory position has been one of the leading arguments used against the government. The government is in a hypocritical position; it is denying the people the benefits that it seeks to exploit for itself.

The communication is quite explicit in pointing out the dangers that can result from the country’s decision to “lag behind” the changes that are taking place in finance and technology thanks to the “unstoppable” use of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technologies:

“- It would lead to the hard earned money of millions of Indians getting hit as they would be affected due to the knee-jerk reaction in which prices got impacted.

– Crypto exchanges and blockchain companies have profitable business models and can give a massive share of revenue to the government who is welcoming. Not only that, crypto exchanges and traders are extremely compliant with stringent KYC norms and have already complied mentioning all their trade details.

– Crypto and blockchain as a concept can’t be stopped. You can just decide whether you want to participate with full throttle or get left behind. The current stance from the government shows they would want to remain left behind after missing the internet revolution first, AI revolution next and now blockchain revolution.”

Another argument put forward is that if the use of exchanges were prohibited, traders would migrate to other types of P2P commerce options such as “LocalBitcoin” or LocalEthereum which would increase the possibility of irregular trades due to the lack of liquidity that provide more centralized solutions.

India is one of the most critical markets for crypto trading in Asia, so the consequences of a ban could have global repercussions. This has already been observed when news and rumors were spread about a possible ban by the South Korean government.

This move is a clear demonstration of the population’s rejection of an almost unconsulted decision. Previously the exchanges had already issued their opinions on the matter separately, reiterating their determination to maintain their commercial activity for as long as possible. The petition follows in the footsteps of a similar initiative in South Korea that generated an official response from the government, calming some of the nervousness of traders and followers about the country’s specific intentions regarding the use and trade of cryptocurrencies. Another sign of rejection in social networks was also present with the hashtag #RBICantStopMe quickly becoming a trending topic on twitter

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Online petitions do not create any obligation for governments to respond. They are means of social pressure designed to show a collective feeling, but there have been numerous cases in which they are satisfactorily taken into account for activists. The India crypto ban will no doubt be met with masses of resistance in the coming months. 

In case you want to support the Petition, you can sign it here.

Featured Image: Twitter

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