The government of India is preparing a national blockchain framework, designed to help encourage wider deployment of blockchain technologies across the country. According to reports emerging today, the Minister of State for Electronics and IT Sanjay Dhotre said the government is already working on its framework, which will explore the need for shared blockchain infrastructure for different applications and use cases. Dhotre unveiled the plans for the framework in a written response to questions on blockchain technology submitted by lawmakers in India\u2019s lower house, the Lok Sabha. The minister was asked by MP Parvesh Sahib Singh Verma whether the government was exploring blockchain use cases. In response, the minister said the government had identified potential applications for blockchain tech across a range of sectors. \u201cMeitY has identified Blockchain Technology as one of the important research areas having application potential in different domains such as Governance, Banking and Finance, Cyber Security and so on.\u201d The letter confirms the government has already set up its Distributed Centre of Excellence in Blockchain Technology, which is tasked with examining the technology and researching new implementations. According to the minister, the research project is being led in partnership between government and academia, with direction from several institutions including the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing and the Institute for Development and Research in Banking Technology. The organization has already brought forward blockchain solutions for property registration, as well as developing proof-of-concept solutions for trade finance, KYC and Cloud Security Assurance. Several other projects are thought to be in progress, including a blockchain platform for hotel registry management and authentication of academic qualifications. The National Blockchain Framework is being viewed as a way of encouraging more research and development activity on blockchain in India, at a time of increasing interest in the technology from organizations worldwide. The support for blockchain technology comes in stark contrast to its approach to cryptocurrency businesses, with fines and prison sentences for those that use cryptocurrency in the country. The country\u2019s central bank, the Reserve Bank of India, has also instructed banks not to serve cryptocurrency companies in the country, causing significant problems for the sector in India.