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At the end of ED investigations into WazirX owner Zanmai Labs, the founder of US-based cryptoexchange Binance, Changpeng Zhao, known as CZ, claimed that his company does not hold any stake in the Indian company, seen as an attempt to given up any role in the allegations surrounding WazirX.

WazirX has been shrouded in a massive controversy over the violation of the Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999 (FEMA). The Enforcement Directorate (ED) recently conducted searches on one of the directors of Zanmai Labs and seized the company’s bank deposits amounting to Rs 64.67 crore.

On Wednesday, Minister of State for Finance Pankaj Chaudhary told the Rajya Sabha that the WazirX has been served with an ED notice for two cases that it is investigating under the FEMA Act.

Following these developments, Binance owner Changpeng Zhao tweeted that his company does not own any equity in Zanmai Labs, owner of WazirX. “On November 21, 2019, Binance published a blog post that it had ‘acquired’ WazirX. This transaction was never completed. Binance has never – at any time – owned shares of Zanmai Labs, the entity that operates WazirX,” Changpeng said in I tweet.

He further noted that Binance only provides wallet services for WazirX. There is also integration using off-chain tx to save on network charges. WazirX is responsible for all other aspects of the WazirX exchange, including user registration, KYC, trading and initiation of withdrawals.

Meanwhile, Nishchal Shetty, CEO of WazirX, tweeted that WazirX was acquired by Binance.

Zanmai Labs is an Indian entity owned by Shetty and other co-founders.

Zanmai Labs has a license from Binance to operate INR-Crypto pairs on WazirX. Binance operates crypto-crypto pairs and processes crypto withdrawals, Shetty said.

WazirX has been served with an ED notice for two cases that it is investigating under the FEMA Act.

You can check this fact by going to WazirX TOS More facts about WazirX: Binance owns the WazirX domain name, Binance has root access to AWS servers, Binance owns all crypto assets, and Binance owns all Crypto profits. confuse Zanmai and WazirX,” he added.

Responding to Shetty’s post, the Binance CEO expressed sadness that these issues were debated on Twitter. “Binance provides wallet services for WazirX. The WazirX domain has been transferred to our control. We have been given shared access to an AWS account. We may shut down WazirX,” he added.

CZ further noted that Binance has no control over platform operations, including “user registration, KYC, trading and initiation of withdrawals,” as stated earlier. The founding team of WazirX controls it. “It was never transferred, despite our requests. The deal was never closed,” he added.

The Binance CEO noted that the founding team of WazirX controls the operations of the platform. “We (Binance) have never been given user data or verification, KYC, etc. We would like to work with ED to fix these issues on WazirX,” he said.
According to the government, around 16 fintech companies that are under investigation for money laundering allegedly received “active” assistance from WazirX in diverting their alleged criminal profits through the use of cryptocurrencies.

Expert views on the controversy

CREBACO Global CEO Sidharth Sogani said he is disappointed to see the drama happening in the crypto industry. “Some exchanges are not only failing, but now shareholders are refusing to say they own it,” he said.
He further added that unfortunately the consumer suffers the most. “Users have lost millions in recent exchange busts involving Celsius, Vauld, etc., and now the dilemma between Binance and WazirX,” Sogani added.




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