Step Towards Legalization of Crypto in India – New Blockchain Foundation

Blockchain Foundation of India[1], a non-profit organization, aimed at inculcating Blockchain Technology in India, was launched recently in New Delhi, India.

This development is especially intriguing, given the legal ambiguity regarding Bitcoin and Blockchain in India. This is the second such initiative to be launched in India, after Digital Assets and Blockchain Foundation of India (DABFI), whose focus had been more on the regulation of Bitcoin in India — than on other Blockchain-based initiatives or startups.

Growth promised for Blockchain

Mohit Kalra[2], CEO of Coinsecure, who founded Blockchain Foundation of India in partnership with Velix.ID and has been a part of DABFI as well, on being asked about the initiative:

“Apart from being a Bitcoin exchange, Coinsecure has also been making efforts to promote Blockchain further in India, and BFI is a step in that direction. The Blockchain Foundation of India already has members from National Informatics Centre (NIC), PwC, Nokia, Yes Bank, and GlaxoSmithKline, and a lot of other people have been approaching us as well, showing an interest in being a part of the initiative.”

Mohit added that the membership will not just be limited to people already working with Blockchain and that anyone with interest in Blockchain and utilizing it can be a part of the foundation. As per him, even in India, Blockchain is not seen as just limited to Bitcoin or cryptocurrencies, and they are attracting members from various sectors and industries who can see the potential of Blockchain to disrupt the existing technology.

Across industry verticals

Commenting on the vision with which he founded BFI, Manav Singhal, also an executive member at BFI and founder of Velix.ID said:

“Blockchain is the future of technology itself. We have a lot of talent working with Blockchain in India; what we truly needed was a platform to collaborate and encourage. Through the BFI platform, we will be able to accelerate the growth of Blockchain technology in India remarkably.”

Kunal Patel, advisor to Yes Bank’s Yes FinTech initiative, on being asked what his vision for Blockchain Foundation of India is and why he joined the initiative, said:

“Blockchain has the power to radically transform the way we currently work across many industry verticals. The benefits have been well documented, but we must ensure that we apply the technology in the right way, and continue to educate all concerned people to reap long-term rewards. I believe BFI will help push this change in the right direction.”

Govt vs. markets

The government of India has so far been continuously warning people[3] against Bitcoin and cryptocurrency, but the market for cryptocurrency has been growing heaps and bound recently in the country, as the government has itself admitted[4]. Almost all of the major banks in India are experimenting with Blockchain, including SBI, ICICI, Axis Bank, and Yes Bank. As such, it is natural that many organizations will crop up in the near future— advocating for the growth of Blockchain and cryptocurrency in India — ultimately coercing the government to define their formal stance on Blockchain and the legalization of cryptocurrency in India.