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Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Indian IT minister, pledges support for crypto and web3

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Minister Chandrasekhar highlighted the primary objective of the Digital India Act (DIA) to provide a secure and reliable online environment for all digital projects, emphasizing the importance of ensuring a safe internet experience.

As India’s internet user base is set to reach 1.3 billion, addressing online harm and fostering trust becomes imperative in order to create a thriving digital ecosystem.

The Digital India Dialogues on the Principles of the DIA saw Minister Chandrasekhar taking the stage at Taj Lands Ends in Mumbai on May 22, 2023.

Addressing the gathering, Chandrasekhar sheds light on the key aspects of the DIA and its significance in shaping the digital landscape of the nation.

“We will not ban anything in the innovation space unless it is linked with user harm. We want to lead the charge in Web 3.0 and in AI–with guardrails defined. I am not a big fan of regulators in the sense that it shouldn’t create another layer of compliance.”

Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Indian IT Minister.

However, Chandrasekhar does also mention that “the industry can suggest guardrails for blockchain and web 3.0.” During the event, Minister Chandrasekhar then responded to various inquiries and highlighted a crucial aspect of the DIA.

He emphasized that the DIA would empower sectoral regulators like the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), and other ministries to establish supplementary measures for enhanced safeguards.

Compliance for startups

During his address, the minister also placed a spotlight on the significance of recent legislative measures aimed at supporting startups and fostering their growth.

He specifically mentioned the upcoming Digital Personal Data Protection Bill, which is poised to play a vital role in safeguarding personal data in the digital realm.

Notably, the bill will introduce provisions that grant exemptions and extended compliance periods to startups, acknowledging the unique challenges they face in navigating regulatory frameworks.

The government’s recognition of the importance of supporting startups stems from their crucial role in driving innovation, generating employment opportunities, and contributing to the overall economic development of the country.

By providing exemptions and extended compliance periods, the government aims to create an enabling environment for startups to succeed in the cryptocurrency sector.

Chandrasekhar’s statements reflect India’s approach to balancing industry development and regulation, which given policymakers comparison of crypto to gambling in the U.K., may become an example to other countries looking at putting something more concrete in place.

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