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18/05/21 - Is online gambling legal in India?

While gambling can be an exciting experience, it is important to ensure that it is legally compliant. This article explains everything you need to know about online gambling and its legal aspects.

As of today, there are a few states in India that have land-based casinos and online casinos. On the other hand, several states have prohibited any kind of gambling, be it online or land-based. Some states like Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, and Tamil Nadu have particularly banned online gambling. 

 

While there are no federal laws against online betting in India, it is always best to verify the state rules before indulging in online gambling. One of the main reasons for the confusion regarding the prohibition of gambling is because there is a vague understanding between “games of skills” and “games of chance.” The government prohibits “games of chance,” whereas betting “games of skills” is allowed. Hence, it is always best to clear up before starting. 

 

State Gambling Regulations in India

India is a big country with 29 states and 7 union territories. Each state has its own laws and regulations aside from federal laws. Some of the states have very strict laws regarding betting and gambling. For example, in Assam and Orissa, gambling is completely banned. However, Goa and Sikkim have regulated gambling via licensed land-based casinos. Here, we take a look at the states and their respective gambling laws.

 

Assam 

– Assam introduced the Assam Game and Betting Act of 1970 which declared gambling illegal. However, Horse racing is allowed in the state. You can also play on online casinos as the state of Assam has no law against online gambling.
Telangana – In Telangana, all kinds of gambling are strictly prohibited. However, you can play on online casinos as it is out of its jurisdiction.

 

Delhi 

– Delhi Public Gambling Act of 1955 prohibits gambling and betting within the state. However, you can join online casinos as they are based outside of India.

 

Bihar 

– Bihar also follows the Public Gambling Act of 1867 like other states. It doesn’t have a law of its own which makes it fine for Indian players residing in this state to gamble online.

 

Maharashtra 

– Maharashtra has strict gambling laws but lottery and horse race betting are legal. People from Maharashtra can join online casinos and play games as long as the casino is based outside India.

 

West Bengal 

– According to the West Bengal Gambling and Prize Competition Act of 1957, rummy, lottery, and horse racing are legal in the state. You can also join online casinos due to lax gambling laws in West Bengal.

 

Karnataka 

– According to the Karnataka Police Act of 1963, some gambling activities such as rummy, horse racing, and poker are legal in the state. Online gambling is not prohibited for the people in Karnataka state.

 

Punjab 

– In Punjab, gambling is regulated by the Public Gaming Act of 1867. The state allows lottery and rummy. It is also possible to gamble online in Punjab as there is no restriction on it.

 

Gujarat 

– Gujarat regulates gambling via the Gujarat Prevention of Gambling Act of 1887 which states that all forms of gambling are restricted. However, there is no mention of online gambling in the bill which makes it fine for people from Gujarat to join online casinos and betting sites.

 

Madhya Pradesh 

– In Madhya Pradesh, gambling is prohibited in accordance with the National Public Gaming Act of 1867. However, as there is no mention of online gambling in the bill, people living in MP are allowed to join online casinos.

 

Haryana 

– Haryana tried to legalize gambling in 2005 but the proposal was declined. It still follows the Public Gaming Act of 1867 which failed to mention anything about online gambling in India thus making it possible for people from Haryana to play on online casinos.

 

Rajasthan 

– In Rajasthan, gambling is banned but horse racing and rummy are legal. However, online gambling is possible for people from Rajasthan.
Tamil Nadu – Tamil Nadu is one of the few states in India which has completely banned gambling in all forms. However, horse racing is allowed. You can play at online casinos but at your own risk.

 

Uttar Pradesh

– Uttar Pradesh also regulates gambling via the Public Gaming Act of 1867. It allows horse racing just like all the other states. People from UP are recommended to join online casinos as there is no law against it.

 

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