Reports on social media indicate that banks in India threaten customers who treat Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies with the closure of their accounts. This move is the last salvo of the banking sector in a country where the scrambles seem almost banned.
Upping the Ante
On Friday (11 January 2019), the founder and partner of Morgan Creek, Anthony Pompliano, published a tweet extracted from sources in India on the latest move by banks in India to prevent the Bitcoin trade. According to the tweet, banks have sent warnings that told their customers not to treat the scrambled or risk the closure of their account.
Banks in India are now saying that they will now close customer accounts if they are dealing with cryptocurrencies.
These legacy institutions fear what they can not control, but people should be allowed to do whatever they want with their wealth.
Long Bitcoin, Short the Bankers! pic.twitter.com/vvjniodaiL
– Pomp 🌪 (@APPLANT) 11 January 2019
The warning even stated that banks do not need to send further correspondence before closing customer accounts. Pomp's tweet came directly from another Twitter user; Indian CryptoGirl, who commented on the situation say:
Indian banks now strongly authorize us to "reserve the right to close our account without further notice" if we process #cryptocurrency transactions. The ability to decide what to do with our money is precisely the reason why we have to invest, #BUIDL, & believe in #bitcoin.
There are also reports of similar messages on ATM screens belonging to Kotak Mahindra Bank. According to Indian CryptoGirl, the bank has even healed its threat. In an update of the situation published on Saturday (12 January 2019), the bank issued a notice to close the account to carry out transactions involving cryptocurrencies.
"We've noticed that you've made a cryptographic transaction, so we'll close your account within 30 days"
– Kotak Mahindra Bank
P.S: I'm glad they're doing it for me pic.twitter.com/JIWzeU54i5
– Indian CryptoGirl (@DesiCryptoHodlr) 12 January 2019
Bitcoin everything except Banned
Not surprisingly, the reaction on social media has been outrageous to many by saying that Bitcoin is almost banned in India. In 2018, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI); the bank of the apex of the country, prohibited banks from facilitating cryptocurrency transactions.
A coalition of stakeholders has challenged the decision and the question remains unresolved. The government did not answer a Deadline of the Supreme Court in October 2018. Reports indicate a plan to establish regulatory clarity for the market.
However, before such regulations emerge, the legacy banking system in India continues to stifle the streets for cryptocurrency trading. With the government failing to provide a definite position on encrypted, the RBI ban remains the de facto regulation in the country.
What do you think of this latest move by Indian banks? legitimate concerns or fear of being usurped by decentralized currency systems? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
Image courtesy of Twitter (@APompliano and @DesiCryptoHodlr), Shutterstock