The Indian Supreme Court has given the crypto industry in the region a huge boost by declaring that banks cannot refuse to service cryptocurrency exchanges in the country. According to Bloomberg, a three-judge bench agreed with complaints made by Indian cryptocurrency exchanges, startups and industry representatives that had challenged the 2018 decision by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to ban banks from offering services to companies that deal with digital currencies, thus overturning the ban.
The RBI has been in a long-running battle with Indian cryptocurrency exchanges, which echoes the larger picture nationally of a country struggling to work out how to integrate digital currencies. This has resulted in years of back and forth between the RBI, lawmakers, and frustrated exchange operators, with the government giving mixed signals about its sentiment towards the burgeoning sector.
Things seemed to be finally improving towards the end of January when the RBI reaffirmed that cryptocurrencies were still a legal entity in the face of continued confusion over the matter, particularly with the banking ban still in place at the time.
At the time, Sumit Gupta, CEO Indian cryptocurrency exchanges CoinDCX, stated his belief that the Supreme Court judges would “see reason” in the case and that he was buoyed by the fact that the judges displayed “an understanding of blockchain’s underlying principles”.
His optimism has now been repaid following the decision by the court to lift the ban on Indian banks servicing cryptocurrency-handling entities, which should pave the way for further clarification on the matter of cryptocurrency in the country in general.
Exchanges Rejoice as Indian Tokens Flourish
The news was welcomed by another exchange operator, Kunal Barchha, co-founder of CoinRecoil.com, who told Bloomberg that investors who had initially backed away because of the RBI’s stance would now be more likely to invest:
Now crypto traders, investors, miners, can proudly speak up about what they do for a living. Now they won’t be judged as criminals.
MATIC and WRX, which are Indian-based tokens, reacted incredibly strongly to the news, pumping 24% and 55% respectively, showing just how important it could prove to be in the long term.