Multiple departments within the Indian government are considering legislative measures to ban cryptocurrency, according to a report from the Economic Times.
After creating a government panel to draft regulations for virutal currencies one year ago, Indian officials have informed the Times that a bill titled “Banning of Cryptocurrencies and Regulation of Official Digital Currencies Bill 2019" is circulating within different departments.
A number of government departments including the Department of Economic Affairs (DEA), Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) and the Investor Education and Protection Fund Authority (IEPFA) have endorsed the idea of a complete ban on the “sale, purchase and issuance of all types of cryptocurrency” according to a government officials who did not wish to be named.
A committee including representatives from the above mentioned departments have stated there is an "urgent need to ban sale purchase and issuance of cryptocurrency” and that the ban could be accomplished by wielding anti-money laundering laws, according to committee minutes reviewed by the Times.
The India Ministry of Corporate Affairs is taking issue with the sale and issuance of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum because of the expectation of individuals and companies to see large return on investment. Such hope is described by the Ministry as a delusion.
It is expected to see such measures against cryptocurrency to be enacted sometime in May after the India general elections.
The move to implement such a ban on crypto would undoubtedly give much pleasure to Indian banks, especially its Central Bank, who have acted hostile towards both individuals interested in cryptocurrency and exchanges.
In may 2018, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) put in place restrictive policies that prevented all customers at banks under its command from allowing their customers to purchases cryptocurrencies. It also prevented banks from providing services to businesses dealing with or settling in virtual currency, causing a drop of 90% in trading volume across Indian exchanges.