RBI’s clarification on cryptocurrency: What it means for cryptocurrency trade in India

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on Monday got here out with an important clarification on cryptocurrency trade. The central financial institution stated that banks can’t seek advice from its April 2018 round to caution their customers against trading in cryptocurrencies.

The central financial institution stated such references to its earlier circular by banks are “not in order” as it was put aside by the Supreme Court on March 4, 2020.

“As such, in view of the order of the Hon’ble Supreme Court, the circular is no longer valid from the date of the Supreme Court judgement, and therefore cannot be cited or quoted from,” the RBI assertion stated.

Though the central financial institution’s assertion is goal, it does give a sign that the stance in direction of cryptocurrencies is softening in India.

It comes at an important time as the federal government is in means of framing guidelines to both ban or regulate cryptocurrency trade in the nation; the latter choice is a most popular selection of most crypto merchants and exchanges working in the nation.

Read | Cryptocurrency prices today: Bitcoin inches closer to $37,000, Ether rebounds sharply

RBI’s clarification will straight assist crypto exchanges which have been dealing with loads of bottlenecks in their negotiations with banks. Nischal Shetty, founder and CEO, WazirX, had not too long ago told IndiaToday.in about banking hurdles with respect to crypto trade.

Nischal Shetty has welcomed RBI’s assertion and stated it is a positive development for the entire crypto sector in India. He stated banks will now have extra readability in coping with crypto exchanges.

On Twitter, Shetty stated, “It’s amazing to see RBI clarifying and helping solve uncertainty for Crypto in India. There are over 1.5 crore Indians in Crypto. This news has brought joy and confidence to everyone in the sector. Let’s continue to build the Indian crypto ecosystem.


The RBI also asked banks and other regulated entities to carry out customer due diligence processes in line with regulations governing “standards for KYC, anti-money laundering, combating of financial terrorism and obligations of regulated entities under PMLA, 2020 in addition to ensuring compliance with relevant provisions under FEMA for overseas remittances”.

This, too, is a welcome transfer based on WazirX’s Nischal Shetty as all exchanges offering cryptocurrency trade companies to clients are updated with all laws.

RBI’s assertion is vital as it is one other indication that the federal government is trying to soften its stance on cryptocurrency trade and go for regulation somewhat than a ban. A couple of days in the past, a report indicated that the federal government is planning to set up a new expert committee to re-examine all aspects of crypto trade.

An earlier committee headed by former finance secretary Subhash Garg in 2019 recommended a blanket ban on cryptocurrency trade. However, many inside the authorities now really feel that the solutions of the committee have turn out to be “outdated”.

Given the latest developments, many crypto buyers and exchanges really feel that the federal government might not go for an outright ban on digital coin trade in the nation.

Earlier in March, the Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA) had requested corporations to declare their cryptocurrency investments and was considered as one other indication that the federal government might take into account the choice to manage cryptocurrency trade. Even Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had earlier instructed India Today that the government will not shut all options on cryptocurrencies.


Combining all these developments with the rising recognition of cryptocurrency trade in India, it is a excessive chance. Regulating digital coin trade as a substitute of an entire ban could possibly be the popular selection of the federal government in view of the evolving circumstances.

Also Read | RBI clarification on Bitcoin and cryto trading, here are 5 key takeaways

A Business Standard report quoting sources in the RBI stated permitting banks to hold out due diligence for crypto buyers and customers quantities to “legitimising trading in the country”.

“They could have stopped after the first paragraph which said the April circular is no longer valid. But RBI went on to permit banks to carry out due diligence for crypto customers like any other legitimate activities that are allowed for the banks,” a supply quoted in the report stated.

After the RBI’s assertion, individuals from the crypto area say the central financial institution has cleared its stance on digital cash and it will assist make the trade stronger.

They additionally stated that the cryptocurrency sector now wants a concrete set of tips from the federal government that may assist in higher regulation. For occasion, there’s a regulatory framework wanted for taxing cryptos.

While making a strong framework for cryptos will want extra time, RBI’s clarification is an enormous step in that route.

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