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Post Lunch, Supreme Court Listens To RBI, Exchanges’ Counsel

21 Aug 2019

After lunch, the Supreme Court continued to hear the crypto matter.Nakul Dewan, who is a senior advocate, representing cryptocurrency exchanges said, “If Crypto is not socially prevalent currency, then certainly it is not money. it is just medium of exchange for consenting individuals. Now if Crypto is not money. Then it should be considered as a monetary asset which the people may choose to convert to fiat currency. People must have right to use it in barter.”One of the strongest arguments presented by Dewan stated that the money deposited in the bank is not the property of RBI or the bank and is only the money of the depositor. Using RBI’s previous stance, the senior advocate said, “Crypto is not money but it is an intangible property. If crypto had impact on monetary stability of the country, Govt. could have proceeded but in their November 2017 they have accepted by it has little popularity among general public.”Dewan stated that before the exchanges and the IAMAI filed their petition, they had approached the central bank in order to talk the latter out of the circular. But at the time, the RBI had purportedly did not respond to that except saying that we have forwarded the representation to the IMC.The senior advocate said that cryptocurrency exchange in India already practice self-regulatory measures and investors investing in cryptocurrency are fully aware of volatility in prices. The counsel for the exchanges said, “Exchanges had even offered to provide dash board to all the relevant authorities citing real time data so that they can understand the technology and business.”The counsel also put forward the details pertaining to RBI’s concerns such as risk of shift to dark web, tax evasion, aml, cft violations. So if the RBI was aware of these threats, why was the circular not put under framework, to make it more compliant.Following the arguments by the petition, Shyam Diwan, Advocate started his arguments in favour of RBI. He said, “Crypto is a privately issued digital means of payments. It has direct impact on monetary and payment system. And RBI has issued notifications to discourage this but when it did not work, RBI took this action.”Diwan further stated, “It is evident from the language of the RBI circular 6 April, which seeks to address associated risks of Crypto currencies, so by that time the evaluation and assessment of pros and cons were done by the government,” while adding that there were instances of hacking, including Coinsecure, an Indian exchange, which was hacked in April last year.With that argument and a couple of others, the court hearing ended today and will be picked up tomorrow.Liked what you read? Join us on Telegram

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