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Cryptocurrency Bill 2021: New crypto bill to be introduced in Parliament after Cabinet approval

Introduction of Cryptocurrency and Regulation of Official Digital Currency Bill 2021 in Parliament: Crypto industry in India awaiting a positive regulation that may allow investing and trading in crypto assets with certain restrictions.

Cryptocurrency Bill 2021: New crypto bill to be introduced in Parliament after Cabinet approval
Modi Govt to introduce Cryptocurrency Bill 2021 in Parliament during Winter Session.

Cryptocurrency and Official Digital Currency Bill 2021 in Parliament (Updates): The Government will introduce the much-awaited ‘The Cryptocurrency and Regulation of Official Digital Currency Bill 2021’ in Parliament during the ongoing Winter Session. The Bill may be introduced in the coming days. It is not on the revised ‘List of Business’ of the Lok Sabha for November 30, 2021. Meanwhile, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Tuesday (November 30) said in Rajya Sabha that a new crypto bill will be introduced in the House after approval from the Cabinet.

The Crypto industry is awaiting a positive regulation that may permit investing and trading in crypto with certain restrictions. The buzz around the Crypto Bill till now has been both positive and negative. The Crypto Bill is one of the many items on the list of bills to be introduced in Parliament during the Winter Session. Last week, confusion and panic gripped the crypto market in India as the wordings of the description of cryptocurrency bill on the list was the same as last year. It repeated the Govt’s intention to ban private cryptocurrencies. However, opinions are divided till now as to what the government means by using the term private cryptocurrency. For full clarity, we will have to wait till Cryptocurrency Bill 2021 comes into the public domain.

According to Edul Patel, CEO and Co-founder of crypto investment platform Mudrex, currently, there are more than 11,000 cryptocurrencies that are traded across exchanges. There is a lack of clarity in terms of what the government means by private cryptocurrencies. Cryptocurrencies like bitcoin, Ether and other cryptos are available across centralised and decentralised exchanges. However, all of these cryptos are created by developers or companies, and not by governments.

ALSO READ | Is it really possible to completely ban Cryptocurrency in India? Check experiences from other countries

“The term private cryptocurrencies is interesting because there was news about governments coming up with their own cryptocurrency. These cryptocurrencies are known as CBDCs or Central Bank Digital Currencies. There could be a possibility that these CBDCs are public cryptocurrencies and all others be classified under private cryptocurrencies. However, it will be interesting to see what comes under the ambit of private cryptocurrencies,” Patel told FE Online.

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15:54 (IST)30 Nov 2021
5 key questions about crypto ads, scams, taxes, more answered by Nirmala Sitharaman

As the Indian crypto market awaits the introduction of the Cryptocurrency and Official Digital Currency Bill 2021, in Parliament’s Winter Session, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman during the Question Hour in Rajya Sabha on Tuesday noted that the bill is awaiting clearance from the cabinet. Read Full Story

15:08 (IST)30 Nov 2021
Monitoring cryptocurrency transactions consequent to passage of crypto bill: FM Nirmala Sitharaman

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said in a written reply in Rajya Sabha, ‘A Bill on Cryptocurrency and Regulation of Official Digital Currency for introduction in the Lok Sabha has been included in the Lok Sabha Bulletin-Part II as part of Government Business expected to be taken up during the Seventh Session of Seventeenth Lok Sabha, 2021. The question of monitoring cryptocurrency transactions, if any or regulating cryptocurrency transactions, if any is consequent to the passage of the Bill in Parliament.’

15:05 (IST)30 Nov 2021
Considerations around cryptocurrencies seem to be multifold and do mandate a debate and policy: Nikhil Aggarwal, Co-founder & CEO, GripInvest

Nikhil Aggarwal, Co-founder & CEO, GripInvest, says, “There is no question that the technology underlying cryptocurrencies i.e. blockchain is a gamechanger in the way that records are kept and transactions can be conducted. While we would encourage the government and regulators to build an enabling environment for innovation, the considerations around cryptocurrencies seem to be multifold and do mandate a debate and policy to ensure a healthy long term development for all stakeholders.”

Aggarwal further says that apart from SEBI’s intent to protect the retail investor from an investment class that has been very speculative, often at the mercy of tweets, there have been recent reports of hacking, concerns around money laundering and lack of clarity on taxation and accounting. We appreciate the Government’s timely involvement to build supportive regulations especially as the volume of trading being witnessed on cryptocurrencies has reached significant levels. 

The advice to investors goes back to fundamental principles:

a. Need to understand and educate on what you are investing in and what does that investment really entitle you to 
b. Diversify your portfolio, especially in choosing new, speculative asset classes to ensure losses don’t have an impact on livelihood 
c. Consult an experienced financial advisor before investing.’

13:23 (IST)30 Nov 2021
New Cryptocurrency Bill to be introduced in Parliament after Cabinet approval; Govt considering NFT regulation also

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman today (November 30) said in Rajya Sabha that the Government will introduce a new crypto bill in the Parliament after Cabinet approval. The Finance Minister said that regulation of NFTs is also being discussed by the Centre.

Sitharaman said that the Government is close to bringing the crypto bill in Parliament. It will be introduced after approval from the Cabinet. 

“This is a risky area and not in a complete regulatory framework. No decision was taken on banning its advertisements. Steps are taken to create awareness through RBI and SEBI. The Government will soon introduce a Bill, Sitharaman said on Cryptocurrency during Question Hour in Rajya Sabha. 

10:22 (IST)30 Nov 2021
Beware! Nomura says fraudsters using its name to solicit cryptocurrency trading services

Nomura has informed investors to be wary of certain unknown persons/entities using its name to solicit cryptocurrency trading services. Here’s the full statement from Nomura: 

Nomura has been made aware that certain unknown persons/entities claiming to be part of Nomura are soliciting services with respect to trading in cryptocurrencies (or their derivatives) (“Crypto Instruments”) through online platforms, including WhatsApp groups. 

Based on the limited information available to us, we believe that the activities being undertaken by the person/s or entity/s purporting to be part of Nomura are illegal and fraudulent, and also deeply undermine and tarnish the goodwill and reputation of Nomura. These activities are being reported to the relevant authorities for necessary action.

We urge investors to be cautious and vigilant in this regard and be wary of such unscrupulous person/s or entity/s impersonating Nomura.

If you receive unsolicited communications relating to Nomura, we recommend that you contact us directly via our feedback link (https://www.nomuraholdings.com/cgi-bin/feedback.cgi) to authenticate the content of any such communication. In addition, we recommend that you do not:

·       Make any payments without being certain the transaction is legitimate.
·       Provide any personal information or data to anyone you do not know.
·       Reply to suspicious emails or text messages or contact the sender.
·       Open suspicious website links or attachments as this may lead to an attempt to infect your computer or mobile device with a virus.

10:01 (IST)30 Nov 2021
Cryptocurrency Bill 2021 not to be introduced in Lok Sabha today (November 30)

The Cryptocurrency and Regulation of Official Digital Currency Bill 2021 was not introduced in the Parliament on Monday (November 29th, 2021).

The bill is also not likely to be introduced today (November 30) as it is not on the ‘Revised List of Business’ of Lok Sabha today. 

Bills to be introduced today:

The Government will today introduce two new bills in the Lok Sabha. These are: 

1. The High Court and Supreme Court Judges (Salaries and Conditions of Service) Amendment Bill, 2021. 

2. The Assisted Reproductive Technologyu (Regulation) Bill, 2021. 

16:13 (IST)29 Nov 2021
Crypto Bill: Looking forward to a balanced approach, says CrossTower India CEO

Vikas Ahuja, CEO of CrossTower India, says the Government of India has considered importance around the regulatory framework for the crypto industry in light of its growing popularity. “We believe this to be a positive sign, as crypto trading needs legislation like any other business. Only the Government’s support to make it regulated will allow the exchange companies to create the right kind of awareness and educate on how to make the best use of this blockchain technology-based digital trading. With the Indian government set to introduce the draft crypto regulation bill in Parliament, we look forward to seeing a balanced approach – allowing innovation for digital trading and at a global scale, ensuring India’s youth is running a futuristic race, while balancing consumer protection needs.”

15:50 (IST)29 Nov 2021
Crypto Bill: ‘Recognising crypto as assest will remove regulatory uncertainty’

“The thing to look out for is that if the bill bans cryptocurrencies outright, or simply bans them from being used as ‘currencies’, allowing them to still function as ‘assets’. If the latter is true, then the bill will be a net positive for the crypto industry. So far, in India, they mainly function as assets and this would help remove regulatory uncertainty around crypto in India,” says Atanuu Agarrwal, co-founder of Upside AI, a SEBI Registered PMS Company. 

14:43 (IST)29 Nov 2021
Lok Sabha adjourned till 11 am tomorrow

The Lok Sabha has been adjourned till 11 am tomorrow. The government plans to introduce the Cryptocurrency and Regulation of Official Digital Currency Bill 2021 in the ongoing Winter Session of Parliament. 

14:25 (IST)29 Nov 2021
Bombay High Court asks  Centre to inform it about introduction of bill on cryptocurrency 

The Bombay High Court on Monday directed the Union government to apprise it on January 17, 2022 about the introduction of the bill on cryptocurrency and what further action has been taken on the issue. A division bench of Chief Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice M S Karnik said it cannot direct the parliamentary legislation to enact a law. The court was hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by advocate Aditya Kadam, seeking directions to the central government to formulate laws to govern the use and trade of cryptocurrency within the country. 

Kadam highlighted the unregulated business of cryptocurrency in the country which, he claimed, affects the rights of the investors as there is no mechanism in law to redress their grievances. Advocate D P Singh, appearing for the Centre, told the court that the Cryptocurrency and Regulation of Official Digital Currency Bill has been introduced and would be discussed in the winter session of Parliament. 

The court said it would keep the petition for further hearing on January 17. ‘Let’s see if they (government) enact the law. With the introduction of the bill, the allegations raised in the petition that the government has not taken any steps would be incorrect,’ the bench said. 

‘We cannot direct the parliamentary legislation to enact a law,’ Chief Justice Datta said. ‘The Union government shall apprise us on the next date if the bill was introduced and what further action has been taken,’ the court said. The bill proposes to create a facilitative framework for creation of the official digital currency to be issued by the Reserve Bank of India. It also seeks to prohibit all private cryptocurrencies in India. However, it allows for certain exceptions to promote the underlying technology of cryptocurrency and its uses. (PTI)

13:44 (IST)29 Nov 2021
Finance Ministry lists out several benefits of CBDC

In a written reply to a query on CBDC, the Finance Ministry says: 

“Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) is introduced by a Central Bank. Government has received a proposal from Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in October, 2021 for amendment to the Reserve Bank of India Act, 1934 to enhance the scope of the definition of ‘bank note’ to include currency in digital form.RBI has been examining use cases and working out a phased implementation strategy for introduction of CBDC with little or no disruption. 

“Introduction of CBDC has the potential to provide significant benefits, such as reduced dependency on cash, higher seigniorage due to lower transaction costs, reduced settlement risk. Introduction of CBDC would also possibly lead to a more robust, efficient, trusted, regulated and legal tender-based payments option. There are also associated risks which need to be carefully evaluated against the potential benefits.”

13:11 (IST)29 Nov 2021
On multi-crore Karnataka Bitcoin scam, Modi govt responds

In a written reply to query on the alleged multi-crore Bitcoin scam in Karnataka, the Ministry of Finance said in the Lok Sabha:  

“Information in public domain suggests that a case of cybercrime involving Bitcoin has been under examination by the Karnataka police. ‘Police’ and ‘Public Order are State subjects as per the Seventh Schedule of the Constitution of India. State/UTs are primarily responsible for the prevention, detection, investigation & prosecution of such crimes including financial frauds through their Law Enforcement Agencies (LEAs). The LEAs take legal action as per provisions of law against the offenders.However, a case has also been registered by Bangalore Zonal Unit of the Directorate of Enforcement. Further disclosure of information in the matter is not in larger public interest.”

13:06 (IST)29 Nov 2021
Finance Ministry response: Has Government allowed cryptocurrency exchanges as a legally permitted entity in India?

The Ministry of Finance said in a written reply to a query that the Government does not collect information on trading in cryptocurrency.

On the question of whether the Government has allowed cryptocurrency exchanges as a legally permitted entity in India, the Ministry said, “Cryptocurrencies are unregulated in India. RBI has vide its circular dated May 31st, 2021, advised its regulated entities to continue to carry out customer due diligence processes in line with regulations governing standards for Know Your Customer (KYC), Anti-Money Laundering (AML), Combating of Financing of Terrorism (CFT) and obligations of regulated entities under Prevention of Money Laundering Act, (PMLA), 2002 in addition to ensuring compliance with relevant provisions under Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) for overseas remittances.” 

12:59 (IST)29 Nov 2021
No proposal to recognise Bitcoin as a currency in the country, says Finance Ministry

The Government of India does not collect data on Bitcoin transactions. There is no proposal to recognise Bitcoin as a currency in the country, the Ministry of Finance said today in a written reply to a query in Lok Sabha. 

12:25 (IST)29 Nov 2021
Winter Session: Lok Sabha passes Farm laws Repeal Bill; House Adjourned till 2PM

Lok Sabha has adjourned till 2pm today. Earlier, Speaker Om Birla had requested Opposition MPs to bring the House in order to allow any discussion before the Farm Laws Repeal Bill, 2021 was passed. (ANI)

12:13 (IST)29 Nov 2021
Is it possible to completely ban Cryptocurrency? Check how other countries have fared

Cryptocurrencies were not seen as a financial stability risk but growing volumes have raised concerns for central banks globally. In Oct 2021, for the first time, the growth of crypto assets was brought up as one of the identified risks to global financial stability by the IMF. There are, however, few international precedents for controlling such risks. READ FULL STORY

11:56 (IST)29 Nov 2021
Cryptocurrency Bill 2021: Govt may take progressive step on crypto assets, says Edul Patel

“The much-awaited crypto regulations bill in India would likely be discussed in the Parliament today. So far, there has been a lot of speculation regarding the contents of the bill. The sentiment across companies operating in the crypto space in India seems to be a mix of both positive and negative. However, with the government’s intention to regulate the space and compartmentalise crypto on use cases, suggests that the government could be taking a progressive step,” Edul Patel, CEO and Co-founder of Mudrex, a global algorithm-based crypto investment platform.

11:18 (IST)29 Nov 2021
Lok Sabha adjourned till 12 noon

Lok Sabha was adjourned till 12 noon following sloganeering by Opposition MPs. 

11:04 (IST)29 Nov 2021
Bitcoin (BTC) current trend

Ahead of the introduction of Cryptocurrency Bill 2021 in Parliament, Bitcoin is continuing to exhibit a lower top formation on daily as well as 4 hour charts, implying the intermediate downtrend to be continuing. 

“Bitcoin BTC is continuing to exhibit a lower top formation on daily as well as 4 hour charts, implying the intermediate downtrend to be continuing. Prices are trading below 50 day average & taking support from 100 day average ($54135). An intermediate downtrend line drawn from the Nov top of $69000 summarizes the technical set up as shown in diagram. However, the momentum indicators of 50- & 100- day ROCs are still trading in their positive territories above zero line and conveys that the intermediate downtrend might have exhausted and a breakout above $59400 will confirm this trend reversal. If it so happens, $60600 will be next resistance for BTC,”  Manoj Dalmia Founder and Director-Proassetz Exchange. 

10:49 (IST)29 Nov 2021
‘This is an important session of the Parliament,” PM Narendra Modi says ahead of Winter Session

Ahead of the start of the Winter Session, Prime Minister Narendra Modi says, “This is an important session of the Parliament. The citizens of the country want a productive session. They are fulfilling their responsibilities for a brighter future.” 

A Bill on Cryptocurrency regulation is listed to be introduced during the Winter Session of Parliament. 

10:26 (IST)29 Nov 2021
Why cryptocurrency investors in India should not act in haste

A large number of crypto users on Indian exchanges resorted to panic selling amid rumours of a proposed ban on cryptocurrencies through the upcoming crypto bill in Parliament. However, experts suggest that crypto investors should not resort to panic selling as nothing is known about the content of the proposed bill yet. READ MORE

09:38 (IST)29 Nov 2021
Cryptocurrency Ban in India may lead to more unlawful usage: IAMAI

Ahead of the introduction of the Cryptocurrency Bill in Parliament, the Blockchain and Crypto Assets Council (BACC) of IAMAI has said that a blanket ban on cryptocurrencies in the country will encourage non-state players, thereby leading to more unlawful usage of such currencies. Read More

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