A recent article by Bloomberg Quint reveals pictures of a supposed draft for a bill to ban cryptocurrency in India and offer a 1-10 year jail term for mining, holding, or using crypto. The India crypto community outraged at this speculation as it was published without citing a legitimate source, June 7, 2019.
The Indian Media and Crypto
In a country with nearly 1.3 billion people and thousands of news outlets that deliver information to people, the media plays a massive role in determining how the average person thinks. Media coverage for cryptocurrencies in India tends to focus on the negatives, very occasionally mentioning bullish price movements, but never really covering the positive aspects of a decentralized economy.
An article by Bloomberg Quint has sent Indian crypto enthusiasts into a frenzy of anger. The article used pictures of a supposed bill being drafted by the Ministry of Finance titled ‘Banning of Cryptocurrency & Regulation of Official Digital Currency Bill, 2019’.
For starters, a snippet of the bill shared by the author shows that cryptocurrency use regarding activities covered in a previous section is illegal. The details regarding that section of the bill are unknown so there is no way to understand what activities are encompassed by it.
Secondly, the format of the bill doesn’t match the way the Ministry of Finance usually frames its policy. The lack of underlined words in headers is the first giveaway, but the biggest blunder on this seems to be the use of ‘arrangement of clauses’ whereas most bills use ‘arrangement of sections’.
This doesn’t mean there was any misappropriation as it is unlikely that a person would post counterfeit government documents just to gain traction, but it is something to consider when you look for legitimacy in the document itself.