Former Finance Secretary Doubts Indian Government Understands Crypto – Regulation Bitcoin News

Indian authorities haven’t introduced the cryptocurrency bill which had been scheduled to be debated in winter session. Subhash Chaudra Garg, the former Finance Secretary says he doesn’t trust the Indian government’s ability in crypto. Garg led the inter-ministerial group that wrote the crypto bill. It proposes to ban bitcoin.

India Failed to Reintroduce Crypto Bills in Parliament

The Indian government has failed to introduce the cryptocurrency bill that was listed to be taken up in the winter session of Lok Sabha, the lower house of India’s parliament. This session was over on Thursday.

Commenting on the government’s failure to introduce the crypto bill, former Finance Secretary Subhash Chandra Garg told IANS publication Thursday that “he had no confidence in the ability of government to figure out the complexities of this new crypto phenomenon,” the news outlet conveyed. Further, he was quoted saying:

I expressed serious doubts when the government had expressed its intent to present the bill about the introduction of the crypto-assets/currencies bill in the winter session of parliament. It is not surprising that there is no clarity about the bill in the current situation.

The Indian government has not revealed what’s in the crypto bill. There are reports that India’s government is considering regulating crypto assets, but banning the use of cryptocurrency for payment. The country’s finance minister, Nirmala Sitharaman, recently said that the bill needed to be reworked.

Garg headed the inter-ministerial commission (IMC), which drafted the original crypto bill. The “Banning of Cryptocurrency and Regulation of Official Digital Currency Bill 2019” proposed banning all cryptocurrencies and regulating digital currencies to be issued by the central bank, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). Garg has now resigned as his government position and believes crypto assets should still be treated like commodities.

After listing the bill on the parliamentary agendas, the Indian government did not introduce the crypto bill. This is the second instance of this. First, it was during February’s budget session.

Garg believes that India’s government is trapped between two sides, the RBI or the crypto sector. He observed:

Believers that cryptocurrency-technology and other businesses are in the money business, the Reserve Bank of India has continuously pressed the government for bans on cryptocurrencies and to statutorily allow RBI to issue digital banknotes.

At the recent central board of director meeting, RBI stressed that cryptocurrency must be completely banned. This was in stark contrast to a partial ban. Shaktikanta das, the RBI governor has repeated several times its serious concern regarding cryptocurrency.

Garg added: “The cryptocurrency exchanges, applying the force from the other side, want the government to treat cryptocurrencies as assets and statutorily create a regulatory mechanism for the same.”

He said that crypto could be misused for money laundering and hawala. There are also concerns about investments of billions of dollar that have fled overseas and the non-payment capital gains tax by crypto investors.

Recently, Narendra Modi, Indian Prime Minister, stated that cryptocurrency should not be used to undermine democracy but rather empower it. He called on Democratic countries to cooperate to prevent cryptocurrencies from falling into wrong hands. His Twitter account was compromised and an update was sent out stating that India had adopted Bitcoin as legal tender. The government also purchased BTC for distribution to Indian residents.

Is India unable to pass a crypto bill again in Parliament? And, what do you think of Garg’s comments? Comment below to let us know your thoughts.

Kevin Helms

Kevin, a student of Austrian Economics and a Bitcoin evangelist since 2011, was one of the first to discover Bitcoin. His main interests are in Bitcoin security, open source systems, network effects, cryptography, and intersections between economics, cryptography, and Cryptography.

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