India is one of the countries that has banned crypto-related trading within its jurisdiction and the chances of the atmosphere becoming conducive for the field seems unlikely. In the latest crypto-verse related news from the world’s largest democracy, Unocoin, a once popular exchange, revealed that they only had 14 employees left after funding talks to revitalize the company failed.
The company fired 86 percent of its employees to reach the current number of 14 from a peak of almost 100 employees, recorded in February 2018. Unocoin raised almost $1.5 million from investors, including Blume Ventures, Bitcoin Capital and several others.
The troubles for the exchange started last year when the firms founders Sathvik Viswanath, Harsh B, Abhinand Kaseto and Sunny Ray were arrested by a central crime branch team for failing to get permission to install a Bitcoin ATM at a mall in Bengaluru, India. During the arrest, Sathvik Viswanath had stated that it was completely legal for users to own Bitcoin in the country, He even referred to the statements made by the Indian Finance minister by saying:
“The minister’s statement was clear, he stated that cryptocurrencies are not legal tender in India. He did not say ‘illegal tender’. There’s a huge difference. It means you bear the risk of your investment and there’s no regulation for the industry.”
Just this month, India cleared its stance against cryptocurrency as Coindelta, another popular cryptocurrency exchange in the country was also shut down due to the surmounting pressure of India’s regulations. The abrupt shutdown happened on March 30 right after the Crypto vs RBI case was adjourned within minutes of its hearing.
The issue escalated when users found out that the withdrawal fees had been increased on every single transaction. This move was compared to what Zebpay, another Indian exchange had done a few months earlier. Naif Amoodi, a Quora user, also pointed out the disparity in the new and the old prices by stating:
“Bitcoin: 0.0020 BTC / Rs.600 (previously just 0.0005 BTC)
Litecoin: 0.05 LTC / Rs.225 (previously just 0.002 LTC)
Lumens: 28 XLM / Rs.225 (previously just 0.01 XLM)
Ether: 0.03 ETH / Rs.300
XRP: 10 XRP / Rs.230
EOS: 0.8 EOS / Rs.250
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