India’s first Bitcoin ATM Raided, Unocoin Director Arrested
Last week, India witnessed the first cryptocurrency ATM set up by Bengaluru based cryptocurrency exchange Unocoin in Kemp Fort Mall in Old Airport Road. A highly controversial endeavor, Unocoin was going against the Indian Government’s decision to ban users of cryptocurrencies from trading with Banks.
The government responded when Central Crime Branch (CCB) officials raided the ATM on Tuesday which was operating without a license. They also arrested Unocoin Director, Harish BV who was operating the kiosk and seized Rs 1.79 lakh from him along with two laptops, five debit cards, one passport and additional documents.
Alok Kumar, additional commissioner (Crime), Bengaluru city police to BangaloreMirror said –
“They did not have any license from RBI, Sebi or any other agency to carry out the bitcoin transaction. They were running it without obtaining any trade license from the BBMP.”
He also went on to add that there were no indicators at the kiosk for the bitcoin exchange rate and varied for each customer.
They have also made a case for cheating and IT act violations against the kiosk operator. They went on to add that only the kiosk was raided and not Unocoin’s office.
About India’s First Cryptocurrency ATM
The Unocoin ATM was only accessible to its registered customers who were verified with details like PAN number, phone number, address, and bank details. Customers could buy or sell up to 10 Bitcoins. It also uses 12-digit OTP for both deposits and withdrawals.
Unocoin also mentioned that all transactions will be conducted in Indian rupees. A representative said the kiosk will allow its customers to trade in Bitcoin and Ethereum while providing an exchange platform for 24 other cryptocurrencies in circulation.
In April this year, RBI banned banks from dealing in cryptocurrencies. Despite the ban, Indian exchanges have found ways to find loopholes to keep the crypto dream alive. India is in dire need for Cryptocurrency Regulation and is being left behind by more progressive countries in the crypto space.
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