The Govt. of India have been studying the blockchain technology and cryptocurrency for a while, now has decided to go with exploring opportunities to utilize the technology; whereas yet not ready to give any consideration to cryptocurrency as legal tender.
India's Finance Minister Arun Jaitley's delivered fifth and last Union Budget 2018-19 for the current Government, today Feb 01 2018. While talking about cryptocurrency and blockchain, he said,
“The government does not consider cryptocurrencies legal tender or coin and will take all measures to eliminate use of these crypto-assets in financing illegitimate activities or as part of the payment system”
“The government will explore use of blockchain technology proactively for ushering in digital economy, ” added Mr. Jaitley.
In April 2017, Ministry of Finance, Govt. of India, organized a committee to study the status of Virtual Currency (VC's) (otherwise known as cryptocurrency or digital currency) both in India and globally. The Inter - Disciplinary Committee had representatives from Department of Economic Affairs, Department of Financial Services, Department of Revenue (CBDT), Ministry of Home Affairs, Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, Reserve Bank of India, NITI Aayog and State Bank of India for the study and submit the report.
Words on not accepting Bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency as a legal tender, has always been there, but now it has got official confirmation. As indicated, The Government will take all measures to stop cryptocurrency circulation. The good news is that India hasn't ruled out all the opportunities yet and is considering Blockchain Technology for further research and possible implementation.
Many Govts. across the world has considered studying blockchain and have stepped towards its implementation. Recently, Virgina and West Virgina (USA) announced the study of blockchain for implementation in state. Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook CEO considered the study of blockchain technology and possible implementation. Also, UNICEF announced funding blockchain projects for the good of the society. So it seems, considering exploring blockchain opportunities is not a bad idea at all for India.
Update: The heading and image of the article has been changed to give better clarity of the content.