Casinos in India were completely banned till independence, thanks to the Public Gambling Act of 1867, passed by the British government. After independence, the constitution empowered the states to form their own laws regarding gambling within their state boundaries. Goa became the first state in India to legalize casinos and was followed by Sikkim and Daman. Each year, thousands of tourists throng these casinos, which help them rake in huge profits. But does the state benefit from this? Do Indian casinos pay state taxes?
Read on to understand how this part of running a casino works.
Do Indian casinos pay state taxes?
Casinos in India are required to pay an annual licensing fee to the state in order to renew their operating permits and keep the casino running. The amount to be paid depends on the area of the casino, in the case of land-based casinos, or the capacity of the vessel, in the case of offshore casinos. Depending on these, the fees may range from anywhere between ₹10 crore to ₹50 crores per year.
In addition to these licensing fees, the casinos are also liable to pay service charges and other taxes like excise duties on liquor sales to the state governments.
States like Goa are heavily dependent on casinos for revenues, as they pay more than ₹150 crores annually by the way of fees and taxes. Also, legalizing casinos have greatly increased tourism in such states.
A case to legalize gambling and betting
States like Goa and Sikkim are bearing the fruits of legalized gambling. Legalizing gambling activities in a state not only eliminates the chances of underground activities but also ensures that the business is well regulated, ensuring the safety of monies and people involved.
More and more states should look to legalize gambling and betting as they can be better regulated, can shore up the finances of states, and the money collected as taxes can be used for the greater good.