- We may recall that in February this year the Finance Ministry had said that it had no intention of considering Cryptocurrencies as legal tender.
- Also, in July RBI banned all banks, NBFCs and other financial institutions from dealing in Cryptocurrencies.
- Cryptocurrencies can be bought and sold by Indian if they had an overseas account or an overseas relative or friend who could transact on their behalf.
- Now in order to help the users and to overcome the difficulties, Unocoin the Cryptocurrency exchange has launched an ATM or a KIOSK as the company calls it, for Indians to buy and sell bitcoins.
- The first such has been installed in a mall in Bengaluru. The ATM is provided by NCR and it looks like a normal ATM machine of a bank but with some modifications.
- It cannot be used for transacting through debit/credit cards which facility has been disabled since banks have been banned from using Cryptocurrencies.
- Customers of Unocoin and its unit Unodax can deposit or withdraw cash between Rs. 1000 and Rs. 10,000 per transaction per day in the denominations of Rs. 500.
- The balance in the account can be used by a customer to buy other Cryptocurrencies through the ATM.
- Unicon adds that few more Kiosks will be set up in Delhi and Mumbai.
- It is named as Kiosk since people should not confuse it with a normal ATM.
- Before the ban Indians were able to use bitcoins for multiple purposes, including buying gift cards on Nafa.in, buy books, music CDs, games at Padma Book House, and buy bus tickets and today they use it to pay for meals, flight tickets and movie shows in countries like Japan and others.
- Also, Indians use it for buying goods on foreign websites like AliExpress.
- Unicon deals with Ethereum Cryptocurrency and Unodax deals with 30 other Cryptocurrencies
- Unlike regular currency that has Government backing, one has to hold Cryptocurrencies at their own risk.
- Despite the ban, it is learnt that there is 18% growth in the users which is now stands at 13 lakh users.
- It is further interpreted that though Cryptocurrencies are not legal tenders, they are not referred to be illegal tenders. These two terms make a huge difference.