Supreme Court delays hearing on India’s crypto ban

India’s highest court has delayed its adjudication on rules relating to a cryptocurrency ban in the country, in the latest deferral of the much-anticipated case.

The Supreme Court of India had been due to hear evidence on the decision from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to ban cryptocurrency-related business, with a new date set for November 19.

The news is the latest blow to those awaiting a verdict from the Supreme Court, after the country’s central bank effectively outlawed banks and financial institutions from doing business with cryptocurrency services back in 2018.

Back in August, the Supreme Court was highly critical of the central bank, and gave the institution two weeks to respond to complaints over its handling of the ban from industry stakeholders.

It was argued in the High Court of Delhi that the ban, which prevented institutions from serving crypto businesses was a violation of the constitution. However, the ban has so far been supported by the Supreme Court, despite several petitions to it over the ban.

In April, reported emerged suggesting the Indian government had begun consultations on an outright ban of cryptocurrencies in India, as part of its preparatory work on the Banning of Cryptocurrencies and Regulation of Official Digital Currencies Bill 2019.

The legislation has reportedly won the backing of a number of government departments, despite a denial from the Reserve Bank of India that it had any advanced knowledge of the government’s intentions.

Subsequently, a government panel issued a recommendation that cryptocurrencies and crypto businesses should be banned, with penalties introduced for those dealing in cryptocurrencies.

While the Supreme Court has upheld the central bank’s ban on previous occasions, some in the crypto sector were hoping the hearing planned for today could result in some movement on the policy. However, with the matter now postponed into November, taking into account upcoming national holidays, it looks like they will have to wait a bit longer to hear the court’s current position.

In the meantime, there is no sign that the Indian government is considering softening its conservative approach to cryptocurrency any time soon.

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