(Court): SHC seeks replies in petition against ban on crypto currency

Karachi

Karachi:Sindh High Court (SHC) on Wednesday expressed annoyance at State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) for not allowing of Crypto currency in Pakistan.

A two-member bench of SHC, headed by Justice Muhammad Iqbal Kalhoro, heard a petition filed by Waqar Zaka, against ban on Crypto currency in Pakistan. The court sought details from State Bank of Pakistan, Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), and Federal Government till 5th November.

The court asked them to explain why the benefits of modern technology like digital currency are not being taken. The court showed displeasure to the State Bank of Pakistan for not allowing Crypto currency.

“The world has come a long way in modern technology and we stand there,” Justice Muhammad Iqbal Kalhoro remarked. Crypto currency is running all over the world. Why is it not allowed in Pakistan, Justice Iqbal Kalhoro asked.

SBP lawyer informed the court that Crypto currency is not banned in Pakistan, but it has not been regularized as yet. At which, Justice Iqbal Kalhoro asked why Crypto currency is not regularized as yet?

The court sought international laws pertaining to Crypto currency, the main party in the petition is SBP, it has to submit reply, the court said. The petitioner, Waqar Zaka, stated that FIA was conducting inquiries against those using Crypto currency. He pleaded the court to stop FIA from such inquiries.

The court maintained it will issue a final decision in the petition; it cannot give supplementary relief. SBP, in its written statement, opposed the introduction of the digital currency in the country. SBP is the only financial institution in Pakistan that regulates transactions and currency dealings, says SBP, adding; under the SBP Act, 1956, only SBP can issue currency notes.

It stated that the SBP has full authority over banks and other matters and it has issued advisory to consumers regarding digital currency. The SBP further said in its reply that no legal tender has been issued for digital currency transactions.

Value Transfer System XCurrent has been allowed to work with a bank in Pakistan, SBP says. The SBP also stated international companies; MasterCard and Visa are working in Pakistan. Waqar Zaka, a Pakistani VJ-turned-television host, has filed a petition against the ban on digital currency Crypto.

A cryptocurrency (or crypto currency) is a digital asset designed to work as a medium of exchange wherein individual coin ownership records are stored in a ledger existing in a form of computerized database using strong cryptography to secure transaction records, to control the creation of additional coins, and to verify the transfer of coin ownership.