Indian Supreme Court: Hears Case against RBI Cryptocurrency Ban


The Supreme Court of India has wrapped up the first three days in a hearing on a landmark case brought against the Reserve Bank of India. The purpose the country’s central bank have been dragged to court is because of its blanket ban on the financial institution, dealing with Cryptocurrency related businesses. The first phase of hearing took place from 14th January till 16th January and the proceedings were focused on arguments presented by Ashim Sood, the legal counsel for the Internet & Mobile Association of India (IAMAI). IAMAI is a non for profit organization that represents interests of the internet industry consumers, shareholders and investors. The client and consumers the body represents are Yahoo, India, Apple, eBay, Unicoin and Etsy. The blanket ban that has been implemented by the RBI has caused a lot of private and public industry to file petition against the decision. The decision to enforce the ban was brought in by the bank in April of 2018, which actually came into effect in July of the same year. The ban has affected all the banks and other entities that deal with Cryptocurrency related activity. This decision by the Reserve Bank of India has made the central authority quite unpopular among business houses that transact and do conduct business in the Cryptocurrency sector. IAMAI is representing the case on behalf of all the bodies, who want a more favorable decision when it came to implementing laws and regulation.

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The blanket ban has taken a heavy toll on the Crypto business in India. This sudden change in the landscape has led Crypto exchange platform (WazirX) to change their business model so as to avoid in-house crypto-fiat conversion. Other firms like Coindelta have been forced to shut their services amid the implementation of such a law. The first day of the hearing was on January 14th which took place in the court room, where Mr. Sood represented the IAMAI body. He highlighted the difficulties that industry was facing after the ban had been implemented and also went onto state the nature of Cryptocurrency underlying the advantages and disadvantages of using the virtual currencies. He also highlighted the importance of distributed ledger technology and the role it might play in developing various sector like education, healthcare, aviation and finance. It will also have a positive impact on the data integrity and will enhance the efficiency of financial services. Mr. Sood also told the Judges, that Cryptocurrencies should be classified as currencies it can be used as medium of exchange or as a commodity that can be used as a security. Mr. Sood stood firmly for the idea of uplifting the ban on the Cryptocurrency exchanges as he highlighted the fact that under the central regulatory purview, any commodity that can be used as a medium of exchange is legal and ahs to be allowed.

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On the second day of the hearing, the defense highlighted the global picture and the stance other foreign governments have taken when it came to implementing rules and regulation against Cryptocurrency. He then addressed two major landmarks in the history of Cryptocurrency legislation In India: a draft bill that could lead to a blanket prohibition on Cryptocurrency use per se, recommended to the Indian government in July 2019, and the RBI banking ban circular from April 2018, which forms the heart of the IAMAI representation. According to Sood, the Reserve Bank of India has over step the mark and tried to impose their authority into an area which is solely the area of the securities and exchange board of India.

Source: Coin Telegraph

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