The Daily: Bitcoin Enters Indian Politics, Blockchain Obsession Grows

The Daily: Bitcoin Enters Indian Politics, Blockchain Obsession Grows

On the backdrop of recent developments concerning the status and the future of cryptocurrencies in India, Bitcoin has been dragged into a political scandal between the country’s two major parties. We’ve covered the story in today’s Bitcoin in Brief. Also in the daily, check the details around some BCH-related projects and services, as well as the latest incarnations of the blockchain technology.

Also read: Bittrex Invades Europe and Blockchain Gets Raunchy

Bitcoin in a Blame Game

With all the emotion surrounding the fate and future of cryptocurrency in India, it was just a matter of time before Bitcoin entered big politics and big scandals in Delhi. This week, the Indian National Congress (INC), one of the two leading parties in the country, accused its major political opponent, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), of being complicit in a “bitcoin scam”. On Thursday, INC spokesman Shaktisinh Gohil demanded a judicial probe into an alleged money-laundering scheme using the cryptocurrency.

A Massive Bitcoin Scam of more than ₹5000 Cr has surfaced in Gujarat https://t.co/KR74Xc7skM via @Siyasat Network

— Shaktisinh Gohil (@shaktisinhgohil) July 6, 2018

During a press conference, the Congress representative claimed BJP leadership participated in a scam in the state of Gujarat involving the conversion of “black money” through hawala and bitcoin transactions. According to Gohil, the “massive multi-layer extortion and hawala scam” was carried out by some top BJP leaders to the tune of at least 5,000 crore rupees, almost $730 million, Crypto News reported. However, he also quoted local press mentioning figures of up to 88,000 crore rupees, close to 13 billion USD.

One of the main allegations is that BJP politicians have used bitcoin to convert illicit money and transfer them to businessmen in Gujarat during the demonetization, which was used as a cover. “We demand an impartial Supreme Court-monitored judicial investigation in this maze of ‘mega bitcoin scam’ so that the truth comes out,” Shaktisinh Gohil insisted, quoted by Indian media. BJP spokesperson Anil Baluni has since rejected the allegations calling them laughable. “The dirty tricks department of the Congress is at work to spread confusion and lies,” he said.

Blockchain Craze Goes On

While the Indian political class is exploiting bitcoin as a modern weapon in its never-ending wars, the government administration in Delhi has expressed willingness to explore the technology underpinning the cryptocurrency. The latest idea is…

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