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March 2020

India’s Proposed Crypto Bill Puts Crypto Owners in Jail for 10 years

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Crypto bill

Crypto bill

Lawmakers in India have proposed a crypto bill that is considered by many to be ludicrous. The country is clamping down on cryptocurrency with an extreme proposal that would make Bitcoin and crypto ownership completely illegal. Those caught holding, mining, owning, or trading any digital asset could face a prison sentence of 10 years.

The bill coincides with the country’s plan to launch its own state-backed cryptocurrency—the Digital Rupee. The message is clear; people will have to engage with crypto the government’s way or not at all.

India’s Proposed Crypto Bill

The bill proposes that anyone involved in the crypto ecosystem should face criminal punishment. Any persons who “mine, generate, hold, sell, transfer, dispose of, issue or deal in cryptocurrencies, directly or indirectly” would face a 10-year prison sentence.

So severe is the punishment that those caught committing the crimes would face “non-bailable” sentences.

The draft crypto bill was first sourced by BloombergQuint. The source goes on to say that the courts will use four criteria when sentencing someone. They are as follows:

  • Culpability of the accused
  • Actual and intended gain made, and loss caused
  • Repetitive nature of the offense
  • Harm caused to the system

The lawmakers are even going as far as using the accused’s crypto profits against them. Any incurred fines from the criminal act will be three times as much as the profit made in the first place.

According to BloombergQuint:

“The penalty imposed on the accused, according to the bill, shall be either thrice the loss caused to the system, or three-fold the gains made by him/her, whichever is higher. If the loss or gain can’t be reasonably determined, the maximum fine that can be imposed may be notified by the government.”

Should the bill be passed, anyone with Bitcoin or cryptocurrency will have to declare it and then get rid of it in 90 days. Further, the bill seeks to amend the Prevention of Money Laundering Act of 2002, to include all cryptocurrency and blockchain related activities.

>> Ripple to Enhance Transparency in XRP Volume Reporting

Where Does the Crypto Bill Leave the Digital Rupee?

In a rather hypocritical move, the government’s own cryptocurrency, the Digital Rupee, is exempt from such stringent laws.

The reason is the close ties to the country’s leading bank, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), that this cryptocurrency would have. Both the central government and RBI will consult over the launch of the Digital Rupee.

Until now, RBI has been anti-cryptocurrency and blockchain. In 2018 it prohibited any RBI-regulated institutions from processing cryptocurrency purchases.

The proposed crypto bill puts to bed any hopes that India may adopt and regularize cryptocurrency.

Featured Image: DepositPhotos © hello.artmagination.com

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Litecoin is Under Pressure Ahead of the Halving, So What Next?

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Litecoin

Litecoin

Over the course of the past few years, Litecoin (LTC) has firmly emerged as one of the more popular altcoins in the crypto sphere, but the token is slowly but surely approaching a day of reckoning as the much talked about halving is going to take place soon. The halving is going to reduce the reward for completing a blockchain to 12.5 LTC for miners, and many believe this is a step that could prove to be a problem for the cryptocurrency in the initial period.

Analysis

The halving is going to take place next week, and considering the fact that the wide crypto market is currently going through a churn, there is a belief that it could have an immediate negative effect on the price.

On Monday, the price of one Litecoin stood at $91, and it just about managed to hold on to its exalted status as the cryptocurrency with the fourth-highest market cap. However, the coming days could prove to be significantly tough for the coin if experts are to be believed. The price action so far, ever since the halving was announced, has seen the price of Litecoin rise, followed by staged drops in price and it is going to be highly interesting to see how it all works out when it takes place officially next week.

>> Technical Price Analysis: Ethereum (ETH) and Ripple (XRP)

On the other hand, there are other analysts who are convinced that the halving is going to result in an explosion in the price of Litecoin. Since the lowered reward for miners has the potential of making Litecoin scarce, its price could rise significantly once the halving takes place next week. That being said, nothing can be predicted with any kind of certainty in the crypto sphere, and considering the sort of fluctuations that have taken place over the course of July, anything can happen. However, it cannot be denied it is a significant event for Litecoin and one that could decide the immediate future of the token.

Featured image: DepositPhotos © winst2014

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Ripple Announces New Partnership with UK Remittance Firm

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Ripple

Ripple

Ripple, the world’s third-largest cryptocurrency by market cap, has announced a new partnership with UK remittance firm Xendpay.

The London-based firm will now become a part of Ripple’s global settlement platform, RippleNet, according to a press release issued today. Joining RippleNet will now allow Xendpay access to markets in Bangladesh, Malaysia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia, and Thailand. Xendpay is a money transfer platform that is popular among migrant communities as it allows them to repatriate funds while, crucially, giving them the option to waive transfer fees through its Pay What You Want service.

“Most of our customers are migrants who are sending money back home. This money is vital to support their families: to pay rent or mortgage, electricity bills, medical fees and education costs. Being an online service allows us to reduce our overheads and pass the savings on to these clients, for whom every penny counts,” said Bhavin Vaghela, Xendpay’s Head of Product Innovation.

He continued to state how Ripple’s support will improve the service offered by Xendpay; “Thanks to RippleNet, a customer in Germany can log onto our platform at 3AM on a Sunday morning and the money will be in their beneficiary’s bank account in Thailand within an hour. More than 90 percent of our recent payments to Thailand over RippleNet have been delivered within 10 minutes.”

>> 2019 Review: Chainlink (LINK) Leads, Bitcoin Stands in 6th Position

Ripple’s support of Xendpay is a huge boost for the crypto firm as further adoption of the Xendpay system will require XRP tokens in order to make remittance easier. Ripple investors will expect this to lead to bullish conditions and further develop long term growth. Ripple’s XRP is currently valued at $0.27, which is up 2.5% from yesterday.

This is not the first deal Ripple has signed with a money transfer firm. Earlier this month, it was announced that it had made a $30 million USD investment in Moneygram, a market leader for remittance services.

Featured image: DepositPhotos © maloha13

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Fidelity Digital Assets | Taking Its Time Evaluating Ethereum Support

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Fidelity Digital Assets

Fidelity Digital Assets

Earlier in the year, Fidelity Investments launched its arm dedicated to cryptocurrencies. Called Fidelity Digital Assets (FDAS), the branch trades in and takes custody of digital assets. Now, according to FDAS President Tom Jessop, the platform will take its time adding support for Ethereum.

Fidelity Digital Assets

The platform currently has support for Bitcoin and is still evaluating what cryptocurrencies may be added in the future.

Where Ethereum is concerned, the executive has expressed that the company is biding time:

“We’d love to have support [for] ether but you know you have a hard fork coming up and some upgrades, so I think we’re trying to see how those things work out before we make a decision to put them on the platform.”

It’s interesting that Fidelity Digital Assets isn’t leaping to support the second largest coin by market cap. Ethereum is also, arguably, the number one protocol for dApps. It’s more usual to simply follow popularity and market caps.

But Jessop iterated that they are not making support decisions lightly:

“We will probably go in market cap order, that’s where the demand is but it doesn’t mean that we will list every coin […] There may be reasons why we [won’t list] a coin that has nothing to do with quite frankly client [demand].”

>> uBUCK Makes its Debut at Hybrid Summit 2019

Fidelity Digital Assets Evaluation

The digital asset body developed an internal framework aimed at evaluating cryptocurrencies. This framework considers how decentralized a coin is, how much demand there is for the coin and whether there are any “peculiarities” associated with the coin’s protocol. Depending on these metrics, the FDAS may or may not support a coin on its platform.

So while in the past the Fidelity Digital Assets has hinted at adding Ether, it seems the process of doing so won’t be so straight-forward. We will have to wait longer for Fidelity Digital Assets to support Ethereum.

According to CoinMarketCap, Ethereum is selling for $138.66 USD, up 0.19% at the time of writing.

Featured Image: DepositPhotos © Chubakaster

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