Cryptocurrency is one of the ways of the financial future, but to think it would bring about a panacea of financial freedom is to ignore the human experience of the struggle between the controllers and the controlled. Some speculated that while cryptocurrencies would continue, independent coins would eventually be outlawed by governments in order to create a financial monopoly on resources and thus be able to propagate the same errors of the past in a newer framework.
Sure enough, F3News India reports that India is moving to ban Bitcoin while replacing her with her own national cryptocurrency.
The Indian government plans to introduce a bill to prohibit private cryptocurrencies, paving the way to outlaw the likes of bitcoin. The law is set to facilitate the creation of the nations own official digital currency.
The ‘Cryptocurrency and Regulation of Official Digital Currency Bill’ was put on the government’s agenda, according to a bulletin, released by the lower house of parliament earlier this week. The proposed law could be discussed in several sessions, the first of which could be held as early as next week.
The legislation moves to prohibit what it calls “all private cryptocurrencies in India,” but allows “certain exceptions” to promote blockchain, the underlying technology of cryptocurrency and its uses. It also aims to provide a framework to set up an official digital coin, issued by the Reserve Bank of India.
The central bank previously said that the government has long been skeptical about the rising popularity of crypto assets and the risks associated with them. However, the regulator said it was considering whether there is the need for a digital version of fiat currency and the possible ways to use it.
The difference between national digital currencies and the likes of bitcoin is that the former are centralized – issued by central banks and pegged to fiat currencies, the rupee in India’s case. On the other hand, most popular cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin have no central bank or other government agent to hold customers’ funds.
India has previously tried to ban virtual currencies, including bitcoin. In 2018, its monetary policy regulator alerted banks that they must stop dealing with them, citing “various risks associated in dealing with such virtual currencies.” However, the move was subsequently overturned by India’s Supreme Court.
The potential new restrictions on crypto assets comes as the market has started booming again in recent months, with major tokens showing massive growth. Some of India’s industry players have already voiced concern about the consequences of the move, while others noted that there is no such thing as “private cryptocurrency,” as they are decentralized and public by nature. (source)
Considering how important cryptocurrencies have become, and their ability to be controlled and manipulated by governments even more so than paper money, it will be interesting to see what India does, and how this can affect trends for the future in the financial markets.