India May Ban Cryptocurrency
Might launch ‘Laskhmi’ – its own version of Bitcoin
If you are following world’s fintech industry, you might know that Bitcoin is the next big thing just like 4G was to Telecom or the Ecommerce is to sales business. But as with every technology or new innovation, there are clouds of doubt hovering over the Crypt currency Bitcoin too.
What is Cryptocurrency?
Cryptocurrencies are a subset of digital currencies. David Lee Kuo Chuen, economics professor of fintech, Singapore University of Social Sciences explains “Unlike other digital currencies that can be centrally issued, circulated within a community or geographical location, or tied to fiat currencies or organizations issuing them, a cryptocurrency has very different characteristics.”
While leading countries like Japan, Australia, and South Korea are in support of Bitcoin and have already legitimised cryptocurrencies, either as an asset or currency, India and China want to ban it.
But wait a minute, there is a catch! India isn’t doing it all wrong as an unofficial statement from RBI suggests that India will be soon launching its own version of Bitcoin which will be termed as ‘Lakshmi’ or ‘Lakshmi Coin’ (how cool is that, and no this is not a fake news!) Whilst RBI says that it might launch its own cryptocurrency, the government panel suggests banning the entire cryptocurrency operations (so there seems to be a tug of war on ideologies).
RBI Executive Director Sudarshan Sen had talked about the central bank’s discomfort with Bitcoin, stating, “Right now, we have a group of people who are looking at fiat (Fiat money is currency that a government has declared to be legal tender) cryptocurrencies. As regards to non-fiat cryptocurrencies like Bitcoins, I think we are not comfortable with them.”
Being too niche and complex technology to understand, Bitcoin hasn’t been able to get chips on its side. China, Russia and Estonia are also considering having their own cryptocurrencies. It seems more of a speculation now until anything firm and official news rolls out with regards to ‘Lakshmi Coin’.
Numbers in perspective for Cryptocurrencies
- $200B market capitalization ( four times that of Tesla, or Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley combined.)
- Bitcoin breached the Rs.5 lakh mark as of November 1st
- Speculator returns of 844% in the last 1 year
Is it a right decision to ignore the world trend? The Government wants to stay ahead in the startup tussle, but why does it want to be behind with regards to bitcoin?