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Crypto players uncertain about their fate as many versions of draft bill go in circulation

Earlier, there were reports that under the new draft bill there is provision of punishment of any violation, a fine of Rs 20 crore or about $2.7 million, or imprisonment of 1.5 years will be slapped.

Published: 08th December 2021 05:17 AM  |   Last Updated: 08th December 2021 10:17 AM   |  A+A-

Bitcoins, cryptocurrency

For representational purposes. (File Photo)

Express News Service

NEW DELHI: With many versions of the draft of the cryptocurrency bill in circulation, uncertainty  continues for crypto investors as the government is yet to approve the crypto bill, and finance ministry officials claim that the draft bill is “yet to be finalised”.

Earlier, there were reports that under the new draft bill there is provision of punishment of any violation, a fine of Rs 20 crore or about $2.7 million, or imprisonment of 1.5 years will be slapped on the individual. It also said that the bill is likely to use the term ‘cryptoassets’ rather than ‘cryptocurrencies,’ and won’t refer to the central bank’s plan to create its own digital currency, citing sources.

“These are all conflicting reports. One report is talking about prohibition while others are talking about regulators. I do not think anybody has seen the content of the bill. The bill has not been presented to the Cabinet yet.  We have to wait and watch (to get a clearer picture),” Nischal Shetty of WazirX says.

However, sources in the finance ministry told TNIE that what was in circulation was the old draft of the bill and the new draft is “yet to be finalised”.

“How can a draft be in circulation if it is not approved by the cabinet? To my best knowledge it is yet to be finalised. Once it is ready it will be approved by the cabinet first and after that it will be tabled in Parliament. Till then speculations will go on,” a finance ministry official told TNIE. 

Till date the government is not giving a clear picture on the fate of cryptocurrency, saying that the old bill is being reworked. There were reports that the bill will be taken up for discussion this week by the cabinet.

“There were other dimensions and the old bill had to be reworked and now we are trying to work on a new bill,” Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had said last week responding to a series of questions in the Rajya Sabha.

Once ready, bill will be approved by the Cabinet first

“How can a draft be in circulation if it is not approved by the cabinet? To my best knowledge it is yet to be finalised. Once it is ready it will be approved by the Cabinet first and after that it will be tabled in Parliament. Till then speculations will go on,” a senior official said.



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