Fate of cryptocurrency in India is bleak as regulators have been leaving no stone unturned in banning it. Taking a tough stance on mining, holding and selling cryptocurrencies, the government had proposed a jail term of up to 10 years, earlier this month.
Citing lack of banking support and regulatory uncertainty in the country, cryptocurrency exchange Koinex has wrapped up its operations. The Bengaluru-based exchange has been grappling with the supply of services from payment gateways and banks. Traders on the exchange also faced blockage of transactions amongst other problems.
Last April, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) had excluded crypto-related startups from using the regulatory sandbox. The announcement led to falling down in prices of Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin and closure of their exchanges in the country. The move also resulted in mass layoff from crypto exchanges such as Unocoin.
Koinex would go offline forever from 2.00 PM IST on June 27 (i.e; today). According to Medium post by its co-founder Rahul Raj, its wallets will continue to be functional till July 15.
“Multiple delays by the government agencies in clarifying the regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies despite our pending writ petition in the Supreme Court of India, coupled with regular disruption in our operations, the final decision has been taken,” mentioned Raj in the blog post.
Koinex is the fourth firm that is forced to close operations. Previously, Zebpaym Coinome and Coindelat also went into oblivion in the wake of regulatory crackdown.
While the government is trying every possible way to counter existence of cryptocurrencies, Facebook had recently announced its long-anticipated cryptocurrencies – Libra. It would be interesting to observe how regulators contain usages of Libra.