India, that is still awaiting its laws on the crypto sector, is now losing its Web3 advocacy group called the Blockchain and Crypto Assets Council (BACC). The body, founded four years ago by the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI), has decided to draw curtains on the crypto advocacy council amid the prevailing regulatory uncertainty in the country. After four years of nurturing the council, the IMAI feels it should devote its time and resources to other emerging tech sectors, which make for more immediate additions to India's digital journey.
Despite the dilution of the BACC, the IAMAI is not pulling itself completely out of the blockchain game. It will be promoting the adoption of India's upcoming Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC).
"Our stated belief as industry has always been to have sustainable dialogue with regulators and stakeholders and address concerns for progressive regulations. As an industry we will continue to positively engage with all stakeholders and continue to build emerging tech including Web3,” a joint statement by BACC Chair and Co-Chair, Ashish Singhal and Sumit Gupta said.
Members of the BACC were informed about the decision at a meeting that was held in Mumbai on July 14.
Representatives from Indian exchanges CoinSwitch Kuber, CoinDCX, and WazirX marked their presence among the attendees of this meeting.
Members were also advised that IAMAI will continue to support activities of the BACC till the end of July in order to ensure the closure of any ongoing projects.
Industry players from the crypto and Web3 sectors expressed disappointment at IAMAI's decision to dissolve the BACC.
Kashif Raza, the founder of crypto education platform Bitinning called IAMAI's decision a “sad move”.
Some people also said that the BACC, in its four years of working, failed to make a significant influence on India's crypto sector and hence its dismantlement will not be an issue.
The sentiment around cryptocurrencies in India is undergoing changes on a regular basis.
After the crypto taxes came into effect in India in these recent months, the trading volumes on exchanges saw big slashes.
The average daily transaction volume on Indian exchanges WazirX, CoinDCX, BitBNS, and Zebpay reportedly dipped to $5.6 million (roughly Rs. 44 crore) in the last few days. Up until June, this volume was around $10 million (roughly Rs. 80 crore).
By July 3, the trade volumes on BitBNS and CoinDCX crypto exchanges reportedly dropped by 37.4 percent and 90.9 percent respectively.
Since the starting of July, Indians have begun to see one percent tax deductions on each crypto transaction. This essentially means that one percent TDS is being levied on every purchase and deposit of crypto assets, thus increasing the pressure on investors.
Indian crypto traders are also struggling to see profits after paying a 30 percent tax on transactions of VDAs. This rule went live in April.
Earlier this year, Indian authorities also said that they were not looking to provide any tax relaxations or benefits to crypto miners and other industry players who are likely to spend hefty amounts to keep the crypto ecosystem up and running.
All these reasons combined, the IAMAI reportedly felt that it was risking its reputation by pushing for a cause that is far from seeing the light of the day right now, the cause being crypto adoption.
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