Why SC rejects plea for cryptocurrency trading guidelines?

PTI | | Posted by Singh Rahul Sunilkumar

The Supreme Court has refused to entertain a petition seeking a direction to the Centre and others to frame guidelines for regulation of trading and mining of cryptocurrencies.

A view of the Supreme Court building, the apex judicial body of India, in New Delhi.

Cryptocurrencies are blockchain-based digital or virtual currencies which operate independently of a central bank.

A bench headed by Chief Justice D Y Chandrachud said the main reliefs sought in the plea were more in nature of a legislative direction.

The bench, also comprising Justices J B Pardiwala and Manoj Misra, observed that though the petition was under Article 32 of the Constitution, it was evident that the “real purpose is to seek bail in proceedings which are pending against the petitioner.”

“We are unable to subscribe to this course of action. The petitioner would be at liberty to move the appropriate court for the grant of regular bail. Insofar as the main reliefs are concerned, they are more in a nature of a legislative direction which the court cannot issue under Article 32 of the Constitution,” the bench said in its order passed on Friday.

Article 32 deals with right to constitutional remedies and 32 (1) grants a citizen the right to move the apex court for enforcement of rights.

The bench noted that reliefs sought in the plea filed by the Uttar Pradesh-based man also included a direction for prosecution of cases involving digital assets/cryptocurrencies.

“We accordingly dispose of the petition granting liberty to the petitioner to pursue his remedies in accordance with law,” it said.

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