“Ban crypto to promote money laundering; Regulate crypto to prevent money laundering.” Nischal Shetty, the CEO of WazirX and one of the biggest voice for the pro-crypto movement in India said.
This is a simple rule that history is a witness of. Not only with crypto, with anything. However, the Indian government doesn’t seem to understand this. The “Banning of Cryptocurrencies and Regulation of Official Digital Currencies Bill 2019″ draft has been circulated to relevant government departments.
These departments, including the Department of Economic Affairs (DEA), Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) and the Investor Education and Protection Fund Authority (IEPFA) have endorsed the idea of a comprehensive ban on the “sale, purchase and issuance of all types of cryptocurrency.”
As long as there’s a way to bring this money into regulated means, there’s a way to trace it and stop illegal activities.
2018 December’s RBI order, which banned entities regulated by it to deal with, or provides services to individuals or businesses dealing in virtual currencies, a lot of people had moved their cryptocurrencies out of the country. This led to a lot of losses in potential taxable revenues for the country.
The bill allegedly calls for harsh penalties of up to 10 years in jail for those who deal in crypto, clearly intending to rid the country of digital tokens. However, whether the bill will become a law or not remains inconclusive.
To believe that India will totally ban cryptocurrency requires one to suspend logic. The country is one of the most technologically progressive, and its recent blockchain regulationsare optimistic.
Sathvik Vishwanath, CEO, and co-founder, Unocoin, said he doesn’t think the bill will be able to stop the dealings in cryptocurrencies even if it does come into effect.
“Transactions are completely online. It’s impossible to tell where it’s happening from,” he said.
Vishwanath thinks that it would be a bad idea for the government to ban cryptocurrency in India because it might drive transactions underground.