Cryptocurrencies Are All the Rage in India. Here’s Why

Cryptocurrencies Are All the Rage in India. Here’s Why

The hype surrounding cryptocurrencies in India has been booming as of late.

The 2021 Chainalysis’s Global Crypto Adoption Index placed India second on a list of 20 countries in terms of cryptocurrency adoption and usage by individuals between July 2020 and July 2021. These statistics indicate the enthusiasm of Indians towards cryptocurrency. 

Globally, cryptocurrency adoption grew by more than 880 percent between June 2020 and July 2021. The catalyzed growth of cryptocurrency results from individuals switching to virtual money to uphold their savings in currency devaluation. At present, no legislature covers cryptocurrency in India; still, it has managed to catch the fancy of Indians. 

Celebrity-approved

Well, it’s not just the common man that’s fascinated by these virtual currencies. Recent times have witnessed several top Bollywood celebrities, including Amitabh Bachchan and Ranveer Singh, promoting cryptocurrencies. Amitabh Bachchan has been roped in as the brand ambassador for the Indian crypto exchange, CoinDCX. On the other hand, CoinSwitch onboarded Ranveer Singh to deliver a rap explaining how effortless trading in crypto can be. Indian YouTuber Tanmay Bhatt became one of the first content creators who took to social media to explain cryptocurrencies through his videos. Recently, actor Salman Khan launched the first cryptocurrency token, $GARI, at a public event. 

These are just a few examples, and the list of celebrities goes on. Celebrities endorsing crypto platforms enhance credibility and encourage the general masses to invest in these digital currencies.

Brands riding high on cryptocurrencies

Brands are banking on cryptocurrencies to reach out to the public. Recently, Cadbury launched “Nothing Coin”, a new form of currency that can be earned when you do nothing. The digital currency is a part of their product 5 Star’s “Do Nothing” campaign. Users just need to register through their phones, and the mining starts while their phones are unused. Although it’s not an actual currency, users can redeem the coins for Jio-mark vouchers at 5 Star malls. Cadbury further established Nothing Coin Banks equipped with loan counters, ATMs and investment plans. 

Cadbury is not the only one caught by the cryptocurrencies craze. In 2018, KFC Canada launched an exclusive bucket that can only be purchased using cryptocurrencies. In 2020, Burger King announced that it would accept payments in cryptocurrencies. To enable crypto payments, the fast-food company collaborated with payment platform Cryptobuyer.

What does the future hold for cryptocurrencies in India?

Even though the acceptance of cryptocurrency is widespread in India, the future seems to be hanging by a thread. Given the decentralized nature of crypto, crypto transactions are untraceable due to the clouding of private user information. This might pose a threat to the financial and economic stability of the country. Understandably, the Indian government has plans to address the rise of crypto. Whether the government plans to ban private cryptocurrencies as legal tender, or simply impose regulations remains to be seen.

In fact, the Cryptocurrency and Regulation of Official Digital Currency Bill was introduced during the Winter Session of Parliament, which commenced on November 29 and is expected to end around December 23, 2021. This bill, if passed, puts the future of the US$6.6 billion Indian digital currency market in question. 

Header image courtesy of Unsplash

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Nidhi Singh
A self-confessed Bollywood lover, travel junkie, and food evangelist. I like traveling and I believe it is essential to take your mind off the daily monotony. I’ll be reporting on stories from Asia's entrepreneurial ecosystem and can’t wait to get going!

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