Not long ago, the Indian Reserve Bank (RBI) was doing everything within its power to kick cryptocurrencies out of the country, but it seems that the government may have had some tricks up its sleeve to add to that move.
Apparently, the Indian government is planning to launch its own cryptocurrency that will be used by everyone who wants to transact with cryptos in the country. Every other cryptocurrency has been banned.
The reports are backed by comments by one senior government official who said that the country was in fact planning to launch a digital currency. The official is a member of a special board put together by the Indian ministry of finance back in 2017.
The board’s task was to draw up feasible policies to govern digital currencies in the country. The board was to table its report by July 2018, but that period has been pushed to the end of the year.
What’s really interesting is the fact that the government and RBI have been fiercely fighting against the propagation of digital currencies in the country yet they’re now planning to create a national coin.
In fact, the Indian government has been trying to figure out how a national digital currency would perform – even as it cracked down on other cryptocurrencies. One official was quoted as saying that if, indeed, the government goes ahead to launch a national coin, possession of any other altcoin would be deemed illegal and punishable by law.
The RBI’s move to ban other cryptocurrencies hasn’t quite sat well with many companies that see it as unfair. They have since gone to court to contest the decision. However, many such companies have shut down, mainly because the court case doesn’t seem to be getting solved anytime soon.
In RBI’s view, digital currencies are a huge risk and their use shouldn’t be allowed without a short legal leash attached. The bank cites money laundering, financing of criminal activities, and fraud as the main concerns.
India is not the first country to get plans underway to launch its own national cryptocurrency. Venezuela has already launched its own, called the Petro. The Venezuelan government hopes that the Petro will help ease the pains of inflation in the country. The Petro is backed by the country’s massive oil reserves. Iran has also joined the list of countries creating their own digital currencies.