India Needs a Single Crypto Regulator, Says Polygon Co-Founder

A collective authority could encourage projects like Polygon to set up shop in India, co-founder Sandeep Nailwal told CoinDesk.

AccessTimeIconApr 22, 2022 at 3:33 a.m. UTC
Updated May 11, 2023 at 6:15 p.m. UTC

India needs a single regulator to oversee all crypto-related matters, says the co-founder of Ethereum-scaling tool Polygon.

Sandeep Nailwal, who is one of the crypto industry’s most prominent Indian-born entrepreneurs and who now lives in Dubai, told CoinDesk that the creation of a collective authority composed of representatives from the Reserve Bank of India, Securities and Exchange Board of India, the Goods and Services Tax Council and Finance Ministry would encourage projects like his own to set up shop in the country.

“The finance ministry should be the one heading this task force, and every other institution should be given a clear mandate that no crypto case shall be handled locally. It should only be handled by the central crypto task force,” Nailwal said.

According to Nailwal, those steps are needed to secure a fair environment for dialogue and ensure progress between blockchain advocates and monetary and national security advocates.

Nailwal said that different government or enforcement institutions in different regions of India are all now actively involved in crypto and they each have their own definition of what crypto is. The technology requires a dedicated team, he said.

“What they see is that crazy value is being created and try to see how it can be taxed in India. That’s needed, too. But to expect each nodal member of each regulatory body to truly understand this new technology in their busy schedules is very difficult. Hence we need one single highly empowered division, which has singular responsibility to interact, learn and enforce regulations on this fairly niche industry” Nailwal said.

Nailwal said it was primarily regulatory uncertainty that has kept Polygon out of India, and he has stated previously that although the co-founders are originally from India, Polygon is “not an Indian entity” but a “decentralized network with no headquarters.” He also said that Polygon is an entity registered in the British Virgin Islands.

“Polygon never set up in India from day zero,” Nailwal said.

Discussing Polygon’s primary focus and vision at a time when the platform has been involved in scaling, decentralized finance (DeFi), NFT (non-fungible token) apps, decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs) and gaming, Nailwal explained that while the core goal is to purely scale up, the immediate focus is different.

“We have an obligation for the next two years and that is to evangelize because if we keep scaling, but there’s nobody to use the applications, then it’s not productive for anyone,” Nailwal said.


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Amitoj Singh is CoinDesk's regulatory reporter covering India. He holds BTC and ETH below CoinDesk's disclosure threshold of $1,000.

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