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TICKERTAPE PODCAST with Anurag Bhatnagar: Crypto In India: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly



 

India seems to have a love-hate relationship with Cryptocurrencies. Every single day, there seems to be new speculation of regulation that will determine the fate of crypto in our country. Some folks in the government are for the new technology, some are strongly opposed. And as investors, that leaves us with our hands in our pockets wondering what on earth we should do. Should we invest? Should we continue to wait for more news about what will happen? How do we even analyze a crypto as a possible investment? All of that and more, to come in this episode. In this episode, we spoke to Anurag Bhatnagar, who’s the co-founder of ShiftAltCap, which as an investment management firm based in India.

 


Armaan Khendry: From ticker-tape. This is where's my money. India seems to have a love, hate relationship with cryptocurrencies. Every single day, there seems to be some sort of new speculation on the regulation that will determine the fate of crypto in our country. Some folks in the government are for the new technology, but some are strongly opposed.


And as investors that leaves us with our hands in our pockets, wondering what on earth we should do next? Should we invest? Should we continue to wait for more news about what will happen? How do we even analyze whether a cryptocurrency is a good investment for us? All of that, and more to come in this episode.


In this episode, we spoke to Anurag Bhatnagar. Who's the co-founder of ShiftAltCap, which is an investment management firm and to begin with, we spoke about the current scale of cryptocurrency in India. PS: it's much bigger than you'd think.


Anurag Bhatnagar: So. Let me start with the good news first. India has the largest number of crypto users and registered users in the world on the last count in September 2021, the number had crossed 10 crore users. The second highest number of users was in the US at one fourth of that 2.7 cross. And there's obviously something which has taken Indians by surprise and Indians have taken cryptocurrency by surprise, both. Because they see this as not just asset. They see it as a new form of financial system coming up across the world, which is borderless, which is not controlled by any intermediary, which maintains your anonymity and flexibility and freedom, that has really attracted a lot of people. Of course, the kind of returns they have been seeing over the last a year and a half has also acted as a very big catalyst.


Despite all of the advantages that Anurag just mentioned, the Indian government and the RBI have had a love, hate relationship with cryptocurrency. And here's why.


The stability of the economy comes out of the ability of the central bank to regulate the supply of money. When you have cryptocurrency, the supply can technically be unlimited because of which, it could lead to inflation hyperinflation. It could lead to dilution of the power of the state, which is why RBI in 2018 band it..


Then in March 2020, Supreme court reversed this decision. And they said, look, you can buy a crypto as an asset, just like you buy a car or you buy shares, but it is not a legal tender, which basically means that you cannot use crypto to buy and sell goods. You cannot use it to pay for goods or services. For example, if you want to buy a pizza, you can't pay for it using crypto just like you can't pay for a car by giving some shares or by giving some bonds. So it's not a legal tender. However, it is legally allowed as an asset.


The RBI initially banned cryptocurrencies because of fears of inflation. Some cryptocurrencies do not have caps, which means they don't have a limit on how many coins that co