Oct 20, 2018 20:50 UTC
Oct 22, 2018 at 20:09 UTC
First Bitcoin ATM opens in India
The first ever bitcoin ATM was launched at Kemp Fort Mall on Old Airport of Bengaluru, in India, by the cryptocurrency exchange, Unocoin Technologies Private Ltd. This landmark inaugural comes in the face of the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) imposition of a virtual ban on deals and transactions in cryptocurrency. The validity of crypto in the country, however, remains uncertain as the RBI and the Finance Ministry have issued numerous directions, warning banks against trading in them. All Banks and institutions under the RBI’s mandate had been directed to terminate all relationships with any firms dealing in Cryptocurrency from July 6th, of this year. The government, on the other hand, had said that cryptocurrencies were not a legal tender in India.
The cryptocurrency ATM, a feature that is becoming quite the common service in many countries, will allow the customers to deposit and withdraw INR from the kiosk, but with the help of riders. The kiosk, which has both a trading and an exchange platform, does not accept credit or debit cards as it is yet not possible to involve the banks, in the process of these transactions. The minimum amount for deposits is 1000 INR, only to be given in multiples of 500 INR banknotes. All operations must be made in rupees, after which they can be exchanged into a currency of the user’s choice. Withdrawals require a prior request and a 12 digit one-time password.
The kiosk is available only to Unocoin’s registered customers, who according to the information given out by Unocoin, can buy or sell up to 10 Bitcoins per day. Registration is to be done through their mobile numbers and will require the customer to enter a password. this step leads to the next one which includes a detailed verification process where details like the user’s PAN number, phone number, address and bank details will be asked for.
About the notice issued by the Finance Ministry, Sathik Vishwanath, Unocoin’s founder in a statement on their official website said,
“the legality of cryptocurrencies as such and hence the legality status of Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies in India remain unchanged. This decision of RBI was more in line with its earlier statements on the risk associated with the cryptos.”