Blockchain in India: So far so Good
The report on blockchain and virtual currencies issued by the Government of India embodies promises that carry massive boost to the blockchain sector in India. But this report contradicts with the recent bill that was proposed by the Department of Economic Affairs that titled “Banning of Cryptocurrency & Regulation of Official Digital Currency Bill, 2019”. For India, it is the requiem for the many advantages that can be offered by the DLT in terms of slashing the administration and transaction costs, rule out duplication, improving speed, efficiency, and accuracy of data as well as detecting fraud.
Blockchain has been instrumental in accelerating governmental capabilities and has exhibited potential advantages for the public, as well as healthcare and education. For India, the country has witnessed to exponential benefits that
demonstrate the true perks of blockchain in various governmental projects as well as banking, insurance, and managing land records. Overlooked efforts of IDRBT, the technology arm of RBI, have two proof-of-concepts to its credit. One with regard to the domestic trade finance letter of credit, and the other that enhanced information for payments backed by the technology giants like Infosys and IBM. Interestingly, other efforts from potential players like general insurance companies have worked on a pilot project for tracking health insurance policies by utilizing blockchain. Last year, Andhra Pradesh became the first state in the country to adopt blockchain in land records, and has further set up a Blockchain Centre of Excellence that made it the first blockchain state of the country. This stimulated other states like Maharashtra, Karnataka, Kerala and Rajasthan to follow the lead and embrace blockchain technology.
The NITI Aayog formulated a strategy to ascend blockchain technology nation-wide. The think-tank has released a discussion paper in April 2018, and later released the final policy paper on the record of a post-industrial consultation. Talks on the Indo-China project left the non-statutory body with the conceptualization of utilizing some of the digital infrastructure that is already present in the country. According to NITI Aayog official, “Compared to the rest of the world, we (India) are quite advanced. We have Aadhar, we have the unified Payments Interface (UPI). Companies don’t have to build the architecture again, they can utilise the underline technology.”
The central government has plunged into efforts to push the dream of Digital India to a reality by doubling the budget allocation for the same, which could reflect in its commitment to increase accessibility and inclusiveness nation-wide. It is proven that a digitally connected economy can drive the industries and allow firms to penetrate the remote as well as rural areas of the country. The Finance Minister’s Budget Speech has set the tone for the country to “explore the use of blockchain technology proactively for ushering in the digital economy.”