The Supreme Court of India will hear the cryptocurrency case on October 15. On that day, the apex court will resume hearing the arguments and counter-arguments against the banking ban on crypto businesses in the country. ‘Upon hearing the counsel, the court made the following order … List on Tuesday, the 15th October, 2019 on top of the board,’ the Supreme Court order said.
As the case has been listed on top of the board, the case will be the first one the judges will hear on October 15. That practically means that the case will definitely be heard on that day, immensely improving its chance of moving forward. In fact, the case was originally scheduled to be heard on September 25 but was repeatedly postponed.
Last week, it was listed far down on the list, with little chance of being called for hearing. During the last hearing, the Supreme Court had directed the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to reply to the crypto exchanges’ representation within two weeks, which the apex bank has done.
In April last year, the RBI had issued a circular in which the country’s apex bank had banned banks from providing services to crypto businesses. A number of industry stakeholders immediately filed writ petitions to remove the ban, which went into effect three months later. Banks subsequently closed accounts of crypto exchanges, forcing some of them to shut down their local exchange operations, including Zebpay and Koinex.
The Supreme Court had started hearing the arguments to remove the RBI’s blanket ban on cryptocurrencies in detail in early August of this year. The hearing went on for several days, in which the central bank’s power over crypto was extensively challenged. During the hearing on August 21, the court directed the central bank to reply to the crypto exchanges’ detailed representation, submitted by the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI). It explains that there is no need for a blanket ban, suggesting instead a number of alternative measures such as applying the Money Laundering Act to crypto exchanges as intermediaries with necessary requirements.
However, the apex bank responded by saying that it forwarded the representation to the government. After hearing the arguments, the court determined that the central bank did not adequately answer the points made in the representation and directed it to do so within two weeks. According to reports, the central bank has complied with the given timeframe as directed by the Supreme Court, and its reply was in-depth. The IAMAI has also reportedly prepared a response to the RBI’s reply.