On July 20, the Indian crypto community had its eyes on the supreme court as the much-awaited judgment on the petition against the RBI (central bank) ban to provide INR and banking support cryptocurrency businesses, was to be pronounced. But Since SEBI and few others have not filed their response the date for the hearing and argument has differed to September 11, 2018.
Crypto industry getting hampered due to lack of regulation in the country
Today’s, July 20, 2018, the hearing was decisive for the local crypto industry that has been significantly stifled in the past month by the Reserve Bank of India’s ban on all banks’ dealings with crypto-related businesses. A lot of exchanges have to change their model of moving from exchange operations to Peer to Peer network overseers such as Coindelta and Koinex. Many exchanges had to shift to crypto-to-crypto pairs as well since the INR lifelines weren’t available to them. Prominent names such as Zebpay, Coinome, and BuyUcoin all disabled the deposit and withdrawal of fiat.
The hearing was not only important in terms of judgment that was to be pronounced by also to gauge clarity on the government’s stance towards the crypto industry and the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) reservations against bitcoin and other virtual currencies.
As the governments around the world are trying to understand the crypto market, the main concerns for regulators in India are to identify the originating areas of money and effectively regulating the trade as the concern of fight illegal financing and money laundering still looms.
The wait just got longer
The hearing was to be held in presence of prominent attorneys of India Judiciary including the chief justice Dipak Misra. The other judges on the panel were AM Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud. The attorney general of India (AGI), KK Venugopal, was also likely to be present for the hearing, as per the court directive.
The Petitioner. Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) was represented by prominent senior counsel Mr. Gopal Subramaniam, who previously severed as the Solicitor General of India from 2009-2011.
As the hearing began Mr. Gopal Subramaniam, Sr. Advocate representing IAMAI submitted that in the world of digitalization, such a Circular from RBI would be a loss not just to the country but to the country as a whole.
Mr. Gopal Subramaniam, Sr. Advocate representing IAMAI submitted that in the world of digitalisation, such a Circular from RBI would be a loss.
— Crypto Kanoon (@cryptokanoon) July 20, 2018
Limited arguments were advanced on behalf of IAMAI and RBI. But as the petition that seeking was regulation, the Supreme court felt responses from few imminent authorities was important. As Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) and few others have not filed their response to the Petition, the Court directed for completion of pleadings before the arguments could begin. Hence it differed the date of hearing and final arguments on September 11, 2018, giving around 20 days to the authorities to file their responses.
Limited arguments were advanced on behalf of IAMAI and RBI today. Since SEBI and few others have not filed their response to the Petition seeking regulation, so the Court directed for completion of pleadings. Final arguments on 11th September.
— Crypto Kanoon (@cryptokanoon) July 20, 2018
The wait seems to have just gone longer for crypto businesses in India. The industry is crippling but still, there is hope that the decision may come in the favor of regulations over the ban.
Will the Supreme court support or cripple this nascent industry that has the potential to change the world? Do let us know your views on the same.
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Sunil is a serial entrepreneur and has been working in blockchain and cryptocurrency space for 2 years now. Previously he co-founded Govt. of India supported startup InThinks and is currently Chief Editor at Coingape and CEO at SquadX, a fintech startup. He has published more than 100 articles on cryptocurrency and blockchain and has assisted a number of ICO’s in their success. He has co-designed blockchain development industrial training and has hosted many interviews in past. Follow him on Twitter at @sharmasunil8114 and reach out to him at sunil (at) coingape.com