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India hosts documents on blockchain

India has reiterated that it is not against blockchain technology. Now, the country has put documents from nine federal organizations and provincial governments on chain.

The website, operated by the National Informatics Centre (NIC), has onboarded 19 departments, including the Supreme Court.

The documents are from six provincial governments and three federal government departments—the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), the Consumer Affairs Ministry, and the Justice Ministry.

The website lists documents, like educational certificatesland records, and drug logistics chains, that have been put on the blockchain. As of March 9, the CBSE has put one of the largest number of documents on the blockchain— 1,71,24,672—while as many as 43 documents are from the Supreme Court, according to the website.

Several provincial governments have also put real estate registration certificates and even police complaints on the blockchain to curb document forgery and manipulation. This is a significant shift in the world’s biggest democracy, which traditionally relies on hefty paperwork for administration work and maintaining records.

According to a Deloitte report, a blockchain-based approach could increase transaction processing efficiency and reduce, if not entirely prevent fraud.

National strategy

India published the “National Strategy on Blockchain” in December 2021, outlining how it plans to harness the benefits of this emerging technology.

“Blockchain characteristics, such as tamper-evident, consensus-based transaction validations, and secured data storage, act as key driving forces for its adoption in various sectors,” the strategy document stated.

The National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), an umbrella organization for operating retail payments and settlement systems, recently signed a pact with the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore, to conduct joint research on blockchain and artificial intelligence (AI) technology.

“As our nation progresses towards digital sustainability, we recognize the significant potential for research in deep technologies such as blockchain and AI to further enhance the payment landscape,” said NPCI Chief Technology Officer Vishal Kanvaty.

Although India has adopted a cautious approach toward digital asset trading, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Shaktikanta Das said last week the central bank has nothing against blockchain.

“We are ourselves, using the blockchain technology with regard to our central bank digital currency. So the underlying technology is a different thing altogether that has to grow,” Das said.

Likewise, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that the use of blockchain technology will rise by about 46% in the next few years.

“[Blockchain] gives us so many options. It can be used in so many different ways. So we are not against the technology,” Sitharaman said.

Watch: India will be the biggest blockchain nation in 5 years—IPv6 Forum’s Latif Ladid

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