India: Cryptocurrencies not yet legal in country, says Union Minister Bhagwat Karnad

February 15, 2022

By Sharan Kaur Phillora

In a blow to crypto companies in India, Union minister Bhagwat Karad stated that cryptocurrencies are not legal in the country.

Here’s what we know:

  • Earlier this month, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman told the upper house of Parliament it’s the country’s sovereign right to tax cryptocurrency transactions. However, any official stance on regulation will only come once the ongoing consultations are completed.
  • Following this, Karad, in a response to Congress leader Chhaya Verma on the subject said “There is information that some people have invested in cryptocurrencies. Thus, 30 percent tax has been proposed on transactions (connected to them) in the Union Budget.”
  • India planned to go public with its crypto bill twice last year, and both times the legislation never made it into Indian parliament for discussion.
  • The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and the union government have not given any sort of recognition to cryptocurrencies and, therefore, they are not legal in the country right now.
  • The minister added to his comments, saying, “One can’t say if it would be legitimized or not in the future.”
    Keeping India’s tumultuous history with cryptocurrencies in mind — the 2018 ban on cryptocurrencies by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and then the Supreme Court’s verdict which overturned that directive two years later — it’s not surprising that the government is taking its time to frame laws and showcasing massive concerns on the legalization of cryptocurrency.

About the author

Sharan Kaur Phillora’s thirst for knowledge has led her to study many different subjects, including NFTs and Blockchain technology – two emerging technologies that will change how we interact with each other in the future. When she isn’t exploring a new idea or concept, she enjoys reading literary masterpieces.

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