India still has conservative stand on Bitcoin and other virtual currencies

Reserve Bank of India, in its Press Release dated February 01, 2017 has advised that it has not given any license/authorization to any entity /company to operate schemes or to deal with Bitcoin or any other virtual currency. As such, any user, holder, investor, trader, etc. dealing with Virtual Currencies will be doing so at their own risk.

Arjun Ram Meghwal, Minister of State in the Ministry of Finance in written reply to a question in Rajya Sabha made Indian position clear.

He told the House that Reserve Bank of India had issued cautionary advice to the users, holders and traders of Virtual Currencies (VCs) including Bitcoin about the potential financial, operational, legal, customer protection and security related risks that they are exposing themselves to in its press release dated December 24, 2013 as well.

The Minister said that the creation, trading or usage of VCs including Bitcoin, as a medium of payment is not authorized by any central bank or monetary authority. No regulatory approval, registration or authorisation have been obtained by the entities concerned for carrying on such activities.

Arjun Ram Meghwal also said that:

The absence of counter parties in the usage of VCs including Bitcoin, for illicit and illegal activities in anonymous/ pseudonymous systems could subject the users to unintentional breaches of anti-money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) laws.

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