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Tesla to accept Bitcoin payments. Can Bitcoin be a legal tender in India?


Besides putting a pause to our everyday lives, 2020 had been a year with quite a few shifts that can be labelled as unusual. To state a few: 

Overall, Bitcoin has had an incredible journey in 2020 and is continuing to have so in 2021 so far. Its bullish run has also got the investors to compare it with gold! At the time of writing, BTC is valued at $46,325. A surge in the price (A few days ago BTC was valued at $33,087.37) however was the outcome of Elon Musk’s Tesla acquiring a whopping $1.5 billion worth of Bitcoin.  

Tesla to accept payments via Bitcoin!

Not only did the tech giant acquired such a humongous worth of Bitcoin, but the company has also stated that they will soon start accepting payments through Bitcoin. 

TESLA invests in Bitcoin:

Investments in Bitcoin is different than an investment from a tech giant like Tesla. That too for an amount which most definitely asks for a double head turn without even saying anything. No investments in Bitcoin other than the all-time high in 2017, had got as much attention as it has since the richest man on the planet Elon Musk invested in Bitcoin. 

Here are what the Bitcoin advocates are saying about the investment:

Thomas Hayes, the managing member at Great Hill Capital LLC in New York, told Reuters.

Vijay Ayyar, head of Asia Pacific with cryptocurrency exchange Luno in Singapore, told Bloomberg.

Jeffrey Halley, a senior market analyst at Oanda Asia Pacific Pte, told Bloomberg.

Rahul Pagidipati, CEO of ZebPay, told LiveMint.

Mohamed El-Erian, the chief economic advisor of Allianz, told CNBC.

Graham Tanaka, president and chief investment officer of Tanaka Capital Management in New York, told Reuters. ‘

Michael Saylor, MicroStrategy Inc.’s chief executive officer, in an interview on Bloomberg Television.

Michael Novogratz, the founder of cryptocurrency investment firm Galaxy Digital, told Bloomberg. (Source: Livemint) 

Also read: The Proposed RBI bill 2021.

Tesla cars’ prices in BTC:

Tesla Model Names Price in USD Price in BTC (10/02/2021)
Tesla Model 3  $37,990 0.83 BTC
Tesla Cybertruck  $39,900 0.87 BTC
Tesla Model x  $79,990 1.75 BTC
Tesla Model s  $99,990 2.18 BTC
Tesla Roadster  $200,000 4.37 BTC

For live Tesla car price in BTC, check the prices by clicking here!

The cryptocurrency market in India:

“Conversations around Crypto in India have always been an emotional rollercoaster since 2018. While bitcoin has been a part of the narrative since 2012, the larger Indian audience pivoted towards bitcoin and cryptocurrencies, when Bitcoin crossed its All-Time High for the first time in 2017 end. 

In 2017 year-end, Bitcoin prices touched nearly $19,000 and the cryptocurrency world was never the same. With legacy banks and mainstream media dubbing it the next ‘Tulip bulb market bubble’, and retail investors entering the market by droves, it can be agreed upon that 2017 and early 2018 was a watershed moment in the history of Bitcoin.” Sumit Gupta, CEO CoinDCX. 

Read more: Onboarding the next 50 million Indians.

 In April 2018, the Reserve Bank of India passed a banking ban on Indian banks preventing them from working with cryptocurrency exchanges. Within 3 months, the banks had to wrap up the business dealings with all the exchanges. CoinDCX was one of the few exchanges that banded together with the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) and filed a petition challenging the banking ban in the Supreme Court. After nearly a year of adjournments, the Supreme Court overturned the banking ban and allowed cryptocurrency exchanges in India to work with Indian banks. Within six hours of the judgment,  CoinDCX became the first exchange to integrate banking transfers of all our users. 

In January 2021, the official website of Lok Sabha mentioned on the bulletin board that one of the agenda for the upcoming Budget Session would be ‘The Cryptocurrency and Regulation of Official Digital Currency Bill, 2021’.  The bill is currently in the introductory stage before passing through the official procedure of multiple approvals till it becomes law.

In a recent CNBC live interview, our CEO, Sumit Gupta has mentioned how the initiation of a discussion around cryptocurrency within the government is a positive move for the crypto space in India. Since the bill clearly states a discussion around RBI exploring the CBDC option, it is important to first understand what exactly the government is hinting towards, when they say ‘Private Cryptocurrency’. 

One definite positive outcome that has the bill begets is the brilliant collective work of all the crypto exchanges in India. The exchanges are initiating conversations around the definitive meanings of Private Crypto and initiating discussions with the government and helping them understand the decentralized and public nature of public blockchains

Cryptocurrency Rates in India:

Top 10 Cryptocurrency USD Price INR Price (as of 10/02/2021)
Bitcoin $ 45,406 INR 33,05,337
Litecoin $ 180 INR 13,104
Chainlink $ 26.87 INR 1954
Ethereum $ 1,740 INR 1,26,684
Ripple $ 0.49  INR 36.32

Keep tabs on live cryptocurrency rates in India, here.

Cryptocurrency and RBI’s proposal for Digital Currency.

The RBI’s proposal to explore the Central Bank’s Digital Currency (CBDC) option is not clear enough to comment on. The bill states, ‘To create a facilitative framework for the creation of the official digital currency (CBDC) to be issued by the Reserve Bank of India. The Bill also seeks to prohibit all private cryptocurrencies in India, however, it allows for certain exceptions to promote the underlying technology of cryptocurrency and its uses.

Clarity on various matters is still to be discussed and explored.

Read more: The Proposed RBI Bill.  

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