Gambling has always been popular in India. We find references of gambling in our ancient scriptures like the Mahabharata, and there have been discoveries of dice like structures, linked to the Indus Valley civilization, made out of terracotta, during excavations. So what does the current law say about gambling? Is gambling banned in India?
This is the current state of affairs. Read on to understand now.
Is gambling banned in India?
The current legal status of gambling in India is quite a complex issue. During the British rule on India, The Public Gambling Act was passed in 1867, which considered gambling houses to be illegal, and anyone found running a gambling house, or visiting one, would be liable to be punished by up to 6 months in prison, or a fine of ₹200. This law is still prevalent in most parts of India.
After independence, the constitution of India granted greater autonomy to the states, for forming their own laws against gambling. Goa became the first state in India to legalize gambling and was followed by Sikkim and Daman. Currently, these are the only three regions in the country where one can gamble legally. In other parts of the country, gambling is still banned.
Dawn of online gambling
With the recent boom in smartphone sales and cheaper, more widespread availability of the internet, the popularity of online gambling at websites like 22Bet, Betway, and Bet365 has increased considerably in India.
There is no law in the country currently, which bans online gambling. All the websites which allow Indians to gamble online, are hosted outside India, in countries like Malta and Curacao, and hence outside the jurisdiction of Indian laws.
These websites offer western gambling games like slots, poker, blackjack, and roulette, and some sites even offer traditional Indian gambling games like Teen Patti and Andar Bahar. Online gambling has become extremely convenient, thanks to many websites accepting Indian rupees for transactions.
Is gambling banned in India? While brick and mortar casinos are banned in most parts of the country, everybody can enjoy online gambling legally until a strict law is enforced. Of course, for legal opinion, you should take advice from a certified lawyer which this website is obviously not.