The Indian government will meet to discuss the regulatory framework of Bitcoin and other digital currencies next week, according to a local publication. Bitcoin.com talked with India’s leading bitcoin exchanges to find out what to really expect from the meeting.
Also read: India’s Government Divided Over Bitcoin Legalization
Government Working on Bitcoin Framework Next Week
According to Dna, India’s English broadcast daily owned by Diligent Media Corporation, the Indian government is expected to make a decision about the regulatory framework of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies next week. However, no additional detail about the framework or the decision was given. “The issue of whether virtual currencies or bitcoins should be banned, regulated or self-regulated has been deliberated for some time,” the publication wrote.
In order to further deliberate on the framework of cryptocurrencies in the country, the finance ministry has called for a meeting of all key officials. The meeting was supposed to take place on Monday but has been postponed to next week. It will be attended by Niti Aayog vice chairman Arvind Panagariya, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) governor Urijit Patel, Securities and Exchange Board of India chairman Ajay Tyagi and other key officials, Dna reported.
What to Really Expect Next Week
In April, the government formed a committee to investigate Bitcoin and expects its report next month. The committee is also tasked with assessing the existing legal and regulatory framework of digital currencies in India as well as globally.
Last month the government sought public comments on the Mygov website about whether digital currencies should be regulated. The deadline for the comments was on May 30. However, some continued to roll in even after the deadline. A total of 3,889 comments are showing on the website at press time.
Sathvik Vishwanath, CEO and co-founder of a leading bitcoin exchange in India, Unocoin, told Bitcoin.com:
Now is the committee’s turn to churn out the comments from stakeholders in the Bitcoin industry and comments from the general public, refer to the present laws and regulation, and finally propose the steps forward.
He added that “this won’t be a decision as such, but a recommendation, based on what has been told to us in the closed-door meeting.”
“A lot of government departments and other regulators are still warming up to bitcoin,” he said, noting that the committee “sought comments from us in a closed-door meeting” prior to seeking the public’s opinion. Meanwhile, the RBI “has taken a wait and watch policy as a stance,” Vishwanath conveyed, even though the bank has issued a couple of public warnings against digital currencies.
Co-founder of the leading Indian bitcoin exchange Zebpay, Sandeep Goenka, concurs about the government’s next step. He told Bitcoin.com:
They are setting up a task force which will take 6 months to come up with recommendations.
When do you think the Indian government will finally decide on any Bitcoin regulatory framework? Let us know in the comments section below.
Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Zebpay, and Unocoin
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