The police of Pune, a city in the western Indian state of Maharashtra, have sought a court’s directive to transfer 85 million Rupees seized from a Bitcoin (BTC) ponzi scheme last year.
$1.2 million frozen
In an Oct. 3 article by the Times of India, Pune cyber police explained that the value of 244 cryptocurrency units (worth $1.2 million) was blocked in the bank account of company Discidium Internet, which was hired by the police to convert the seized crypto units into rupees.
The cyber police’s senior inspector Jairam Paygude said that the Central Bank of India was unable to transfer the money to the State Bank of India’s treasury branch in Pune as the account of Discidium Internet was frozen by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).
Discidium Internet is challenging the validity of RBI’s order, which prohibits dealings in virtual currencies and has requested that the RBI instruct the Central Bank of India to unfreeze the account.
The district government pleader Ujjwala Pawar said that the police request to transfer the money is pending before the sessions court.
Bitcoin ban and brain drain
Indian draft “Banning of Cryptocurrency and Regulation of Official Digital Currency Bill 2019”, which proposes a 10-year prison sentence for anyone who “mines, generates, holds, sells, transfers, disposes of, issues or deals in cryptocurrencies,” is already prompting local crypto businesses to take preemptive measures. Rahul Jain said:
“As a startup from India, we always wanted to serve from India, but this recent complication has made it difficult for domestic crypto exchanges to operate their businesses in India. So, we are now an Estonia-based company, and any Indian law to criminalize crypto will not impact us.”