Bill banning listed private crypto; RBI digital currency in the works

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, 23 November

The central government on Tuesday listed a bill to ban all private cryptocurrencies with certain relaxations in the winter session of Parliament beginning November 29.

The Official Digital Currency Bill, 2021 for Cryptocurrency and Regulation, Introduction, Consideration and Listed for Passing, seeks to create a facilitating framework for the creation of an official digital currency to be issued by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).

The bill seeks to ban all private cryptocurrencies in India. However, it allows some exceptions to promote the underlying technology of cryptocurrencies and its use.

The bill is one of 26 draft laws listed to be taken up in Parliament and Prime Minister Narendra Modi has asked democracies to ensure that cryptocurrencies do not fall into the wrong hands.

The PM had recently chaired a meeting in which it was decided that unregulated crypto markets cannot be allowed to become a way for money laundering and terror financing. The bill is understood to have been prepared in consultation with experts from the RBI, the finance ministry and the home ministry on the issue. Country and around the world, with a focus on global examples and best practices.

It was also felt in the meeting that attempts to mislead the youth through over-promising and non-transparent advertisements should be stopped. After the meeting, the government said that it is aware of the fact that it is an evolving technology and will keep a close watch and take proactive steps. There was a general consensus that the steps taken by the government in this area would be progressive and forward-looking.

some exceptions likely

  • The Cryptocurrency and Regulation of Official Digital Currency Bill, 2021, is one of 26 draft bills to be taken up in Parliament
  • According to the draft, the government may allow some exceptions to promote the underlying technology
  • The bill aims to create a framework for the creation of an official digital currency issued by the RBI.