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WazirX to launch NFT marketplace for India, South Asia

(Asian News Hub) – India’s largest cryptocurrency exchange WazirX will launch a Non-Fungible Token (NFT) marketplace that will feature exclusive artwork by popular photographers, artists, and mixed media professionals from India and other South Asian nations today.

NFTs are a unique digital representation of an art form living on a blockchain.

While Ethereum is globally the most popular blockchain for minting NFTs, WazirX will use its parent company Binance’s blockchain technology.

NFTs shot to fame after a series of high-profile sales this year, including one by Twitter founder Jack Dorsey of his first tweet for over $2 million, and the landmark purchase of an NFT artwork for over $69 million by Vignesh Sundaresan at a Christie’s auction in March.

Interestingly, collectors can purchase NFTs on WazirX’s marketplace only through the platform’s native token WRX which has a supply cap of one billion.

One WRX token is worth Rs 104 currently.WazirX will charge a 5% service fee on the sale price and creators will get 95% of the sale proceeds.

The added use case for WRX, a utility token, will lead to its “international expansion”, WazirX founder Nischal Shetty told ET in an exclusive interaction.

WazirX will charge a 5% service fee on the sale price and creators will get 95% of the sale proceeds.

The added use case for WRX, a utility token, will lead to its “international expansion”, WazirX founder Nischal Shetty told ET in an exclusive interaction.

“Depending on how well the platform does and how the adoption is, I am sure it will reflect on the prices. But I think what is more important is to bring in use cases because, in the long term, a token is more useful when you can use it in multiple ways,” Shetty said.

In its beta phase, the platform will launch with a “fixed price” model and give artists the ability to add a royalty fee of up to 15% on the resale of their work.The ability to earn through single artwork in perpetuity has piqued interest among artists to create NFTs in India and globally.

“Secondary sales are a game-changer. Artists can end up making 10 times the amount than the initial sale price,” said Amrit Pal Sigh, 31, an avid collector and creator of the NFT art form.

Singh has been an artist for nine years and started minting his artwork in February. He counts exposure to a global audience among other benefits.

Like Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, NFTs have come under the scanner globally for the environmental costs associated it. In using WRX token on Binance Smart Chain, the platform is eliminating electricity cost, and the per-transaction cost for minting and purchasing the NFT is under $1.

WazirX’s NFT marketplace will add the “auction” model in the near future as it plans to onboard big names from the music and creator space.The phased launch of the platform will begin with 15 popular artists and creators whose work will be displayed in the ‘Spotlight’ category, which has been vetted and curated by WazirX, and a ‘Discover’ tab in which 50 creators will be added every day from a whitelist of 300 creators. In its beta phase, the platform will support images and video files of up to 100 MB.

WazirX will let the artist decide the terms and conditions of sale.

In the case of painters and creators who work with physical objects, they have an option to tie the NFT with the physical sale of the artwork.

WazirX has also committed WRX worth $50,000 as giveaways and cashback for the collectors who engage on the platform to buy their NFTs.

It received 15,000 applications, of which 11,000 were creators, said Vishakha Singh, Advisor, NFT Marketplace, WazirX.

The collector applications were mainly global, and the creators’ participation was across age groups.


Bitcoin to get major facelift after four years in November

The upgrade would take about five months as it requires a lot of testing before being fully integrated into the system.

(Asian News Hub) – Bitcoin’s new upgrade ‘Taproot’ has received overwhelming support from miners around the world and is set to take effect from November, CNBC reported.

The new upgrade would mean greater transaction privacy and efficiency which would enable smart contracts, a feature of the blockchain technology which eliminates the need for middlemen.

Taproot is the first and the most anticipated update since the last one ‘Segregated Witness (SegWit)’ in 2017. While the main focus of SegWit was scaling the Bitcoin protocol, Taproot will equip Bitcoin with a new signature scheme known as Schnorr signatures.

Currently, Bitcoin uses the “Elliptic Curve Digital Signature Algorithm,” which is created from the private key that secures the Bitcoin wallet and ensures that it is only used by its owner.

On the other hand, Taproot will switch to Schnorr signatures which is multi-signature transactions unreadable, the report said citing Alejandro De La Torre, Vice President at Hong Kong-headquartered major mining pool Poolin.

“You can kind of hide who you are a little bit better, which is good,”  Brandon Arvanaghi, previously a security engineer at crypto exchange Gemini told the publication.

This would allow greater anonymity for an individual bitcoin address on the public blockchain, but it will make simple transactions indistinguishable from those that are more complex and comprised of multiple signatures, the report added.

The new upgrade will also allow smart contracts cheaper along with taking up lesser space on the blockchain.

“The most important thing for Taproot is…smart contracts,” said Fred Thiel, CEO of cryptocurrency mining specialist Marathon Digital Holdings.

“It’s already the primary driver of innovation on the ethereum network. Smart contracts essentially give you the opportunity to really build applications and businesses on the blockchain.”

The upgrade would take about five months as it requires a lot of testing before being fully integrated into the system.

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Gondola service resumes partially in Gulmarg

Services resumed on trial basis, situation being monitored closely: Dir Tourism Itoo

Jahangir Sofi

(Asian News Hub) – With the graph of Covid-19 positive cases in the valley showing the decreasing trend, the Tourism department Kashmir, has partially resumed the Gulmarg Gondola service on trial basis.

Director Tourism Kashmir, Dr. G. N. Itoo said that the Gondola services have been partially resumed as the Covid situation is evolving which is being monitored closely.

“The Gondola services will be limited only as it has been started on a trial basis. If there are more modalities to be discussed with respect to Covid situation that will be also taken care of,” Itoo said.

“We are ensuring everything is being taken care of from our side, and whenever the Government takes a call, we should be ready to welcome tourists,” he said.

After the tourism was opened in June 2020, the tourism arrival in the valley had gained a reasonably good momentum and the hoteliers and houseboat owners had pre bookings till May end of this year.

However, with the onset of the second wave of Covid-19 which also engulfed the valley along with the other parts of the country, a complete Corona lockdown was imposed in Jammu and Kashmir, resulting in the cancellation of the all the pre bookings giving a deserted look to hotels and houseboats in the valley.


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Cryptocurrencies: Elon Musk Changes Twitter DP to ‘Triggered’ Crypto Woman

(Asian News Hub) – Elon Musk has changed his Twitter display picture (DP), otherwise known as a profile photo, a character from a Japanese site wearing a Bitcoin dress and posed on the foreground of a $BTC logo.

The character has “Triggered” eyes. Currently, there are no explanations as to why the CEO did it. Still, speculations point out to Musk targeting Bitcoin fans that blame his tweets for the leading cryptocurrency plummet.

Musk’s Tweets Causes Bitcoin Drop

Recently, Bitcoin has dropped in market price and performance despite seeing a rise in its trends, particularly as it is on the road to recovery, following the drastic changes it suffered in the past months. The drop in performance of the leading cryptocurrency was due to Elon Musk’s tweet about it, saying that Tesla has dropped Bitcoin use due to coal energy dependence.

Tesla is known to be a clean energy company, and that Musk is also an advocate for the environment, so dropping Bitcoin was a way to adhere to their beliefs and not something personal against Bitcoin. However, recent developments have pushed Bitcoin purists to think of Musk as the villain, especially with his increased support for Dogecoin.

What Does This Mean?

Musk is always fond of trolling people on the internet, and doing things without explanation even though people would either go crazy about it or have them develop theories as to his next move. However, one speculation is that the CEO was about the “triggered” Bitcoin fans who were affected by the price drop in the market, as brought by his latest tweet.

The CEO did not mean for the prices to go down, but his meme photo tweet still had a massive effect on the cryptocurrency, and in doing so, has triggered the downfall of Bitcoin in the market today.

Currently, Wazirx still lists Bitcoin as the top and leading cryptocurrency, with a $37,500 market price and a 4.33 percent downward trend in the past 24 hours.

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