Opinion

Crypto Spotlight: Feature 4 – With Varun Sethi

Interview with Varun Sethi

Snapshot

  1. The biggest change that I’ve seen is that people want to experience decentralization which gives more power to the people. However, they also want to operate in a regulated environment.
  2. There are three biggest challenges in the current Indian Crypto ecosystem are ambiguous regulatory framework, lack of adequate base level talent owing to lack of correct education, and lastly access to adequate capital for scaling up.
  3. #TryCrypto is a very good initiative however for making mass impact physical reach out to schools and colleges and tying up with registered universities is needed.

The fourth feature of the ‘Crypto Spotlight’ series is here and today our guest of honor is Varun Sethi. He runs Blockchain Lawyer, a consulting firm that helps people to understand the various legal issues related to blockchain and cryptocurrency in their jurisdiction. So, let’s begin and find out about his journey and what according to him are the major challenges of the Indian crypto industry.

1) Hello Varun! Can you tell our readers what your brand/company is about and how it is helping the Indian crypto ecosystem?

Varun – We are a global legal tech consulting firm with a core focus on blockchain and cryptos with international offshore structuring and international on and off-ramp solutions as our core. We also have a startup wing to help young blockchain startups to maneuver the regulatory, taxation, and compliance challenges. We are building a legal tech product as off the shelf solution for the blockchain ecosystem.

“Our contribution to bringing the Crypto revolution in India is by way of contribution towards the regulatory framework, the attraction of foreign capital into Crypto projects of India, and the support of educational endeavors in this field.”

2) What is your crypto story? How did you first start and what motivated you to become a community voice?

Varun – I was intrigued by startups in 2011 and developed a startup specific consulting firm to de jargonize laws for young Entrepreneurs who have ideas and wanted to develop it into a business. 2016 was an interesting year when a tech client offered us to pay in bitcoin. Not knowing what it was. I denied it. He kept pushing but I instead offered him a 40% fiat discount (my highest ever) to him. But always kept an eye on what bitcoin was since then. In 2017, we researched for 3 months and realized that there were no laws in India to support the blockchain industry. Hence we filed 6 right to information applications to various govt departments like RBI, Sebi, Income tax, GST ministry of corporate affairs, etc. And that formed the basis of a community rising to call for regulations and take note of this industry. Rest as they say is history (and future)!

3) What are the changes you have seen from the day you became a community voice until now?

Varun – The biggest change that I’ve seen is that people want to experience decentralization which gives more power to the people. However, they also want to operate in a regulated environment. The biggest enthusiasm is amongst students, young entrepreneurs, and international businesses to embrace this technology.

4) Tell us how are you bringing about the crypto revolution in India.

Varun – Our contribution to bringing the Crypto revolution in India is by way of contribution towards the regulatory framework, the attraction of foreign capital into Crypto projects of India, and the support of educational endeavors in this field.

5) What are the current challenges you feel the Indian crypto ecosystem has and what do you think is the resolution for this?

Varun – There are three biggest challenges in the current Indian Crypto ecosystem are ambiguous regulatory framework, lack of adequate base level talent owing to lack of correct education, and lastly access to adequate capital for scaling up.

“To the Prime Minister Narendra Modi I will tell that there is no dearth of hidden talent needed for blockchain and cryptocurrency distribution in India and the government should allow a big enough sandbox to create the next best companies of the world from India, in India, that can change the face of Earth.”

6) If you get the chance to meet Mr.Modi, what will you tell/suggest to him about the Indian crypto industry?

Varun – To the Prime Minister Narendra Modi I will tell that there is no dearth of hidden talent needed for blockchain and cryptocurrency distribution in India and the government should allow a big enough sandbox to create the next best companies of the world from India, in India, that can change the face of Earth.

7) What changes do you think crypto will bring in India in the next 5,10 years?

Varun – Job Creations, change in education syllabus, the attraction of global capital, and change of technology epicenter of the world to India.

8) Your views on #TryCrypto and how we can strengthen crypto adoption in India?

Varun – #TryCrypto is a very good initiative however for making mass impact physical reach out to schools and colleges and tying up with registered universities is needed.

Thank you Varun for sharing such wonderful insights with our readers. We hope to see you back on ‘Crypto Spotlight’ soon.

We will be publishing the next feature of the series very soon. Stay tuned with us to know about the present situation of crypto in India and its future potential by an industry expert.

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