The Union government is not considering a ban on ads by cryptocurrency exchanges, for the time being, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman clarified in response to questions by Rajya Sabha MPs Neeraj Shekhar and Sushil Kumar Modi. These questions were asked during the question hour in the winter session of the Parliament. Sitharaman, however, elaborated that the government is studying guidelines of the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) and their regulations so that the government can take a decision on how to handle these ads if the necessity arises in the future. She revealed that the Union government is also taking steps to caution investors through SEBI and RBI about the risks associated with cryptocurrencies. It was reported earlier that the government was unhappy with crypto ads promising wild profits in a memo summarising a meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and industry stakeholders. Crypto exchanges had agreed to put a stop to such ads then which is still in place. There was speculation that active solicitation by companies including exchanges and platforms would be barred in the bill. The finance minister’s comments put to rest speculation about a possible ban on ads by crypto exchanges. They also indicate that the government is aware of the risks associated with the volatility of crypto assets and plans to address them in the upcoming bill. Has FM signalled that an outright crypto ban is not on the cards? Sitharaman affirmed that the government has every intention of introducing a crypto bill in…
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