Legal Forms of Gambling in India
Gambling in India has become a very large enterprise, and not everything is actually legal to gamble on. It is extremely important for you to know about both sides of the coin, that way you can have fun without worrying about anything. There are even specific court rulings in throughout the different provinces in India that determine what other forms of satta are legal.
Definitely Legal Gambling
When traveling through India, you will always run into one form of gambling that is certainly legal. This particular form is by the way of lotteries. This is a very ironic practice on behalf of the country, seeing as how they have made illegal any forms of gambling or betting where the game is based on chance or no skill. Lottery has no skill involved and it is entirely dependent on a chance outcome – unlike sports gambling or other were a degree of analysis is needed. The many different lotteries are sponsored and promoted through India.
Another legal form of gambling is horse race betting. However, there is a catch. You can only bet on a horse race if you go to the province that has the racetrack. This means that you are only allowed to satta on horses where there is a racecourse. Online betting is completely illegal (per se, it is a gray area really; but we are not lawyers and this is just an opinion from our research), but in this case, you are legally allowed to bet on live horse races at authorized tracks in India and only that.
A Gray Area of Gambling
Land based casinos are in a gray area when it comes to legality. There are only two states in India that have and allow casinos to operate; they are Goa and Sikkim. This would make some of the casino games legal, but only when played in those states and those casinos. Everywhere else India is very restricted when it comes to betting and gambling, and that would include sports betting.
There are certain casino card games that are quite popular through the Indian provinces that also fall under this category. For example, we have rummy, poker, or satti pe satti that are highly played, but no one truly knows whether they are legal or not. This is all thanks to the obscure laws that do not define these games as games of skill or chance. Seeing as how poker is not specifically said to be a game of chance, it is not illegal; however, as it is not specifically said to be a game of skill, it is not legal either. This is what leaves many confused.
Illegal but Still Popular
As I mentioned before, sports wagering is illegal in India, but if you take a look at the total amount of revenue that is generated by this, at least half is thanks to illegal gambling. When we start talking about anything online, whether it is online casinos or bookmakers, it has been enforced very strictly in India. There have been two laws that were passed to limit and make online gambling illegal; the Information Technology Act of 2000 and the Federal Information Technology Act of 2011. Each of these laws states that it is illegal to transmit or publish “information that can corrupt people”, which includes gambling. With the law being passed in 2011, it is now up to the Internet Service Providers to stop and block the offshore gambling sites.
Banking Methods Restricted
The main way that India has tried to stop online sports gambling is by restricting the banking methods that you can use. For instance, the Bank of India has blocked the use of the VISA or MasterCard credit cards from being used to deposit money into online bookmakers. However, do not fret, there are many other options that sports bettors like you use to deposit and wager on cricket or football online. They use ewallets, which are online banking services that act as a middle man between you and the bookmaker. We do not condone illegal behavior, but it is already rampant in India and it would be more beneficial to legalize it, rather than restrict it (as a personal opinion).
Reasons to Legalize Gambling in India
There have been many arguments towards legalizing gambling in India, especially when it comes to sports betting.
• Funds attained illegally through illegal sports and other forms of gambling have been tied to the funding and preservation of terrorist acts. In other words, the money that is made due to it being illegal is used to fund terrorism, as well as drugs.
• Legalizing sports betting will reduce the amount of illegal wagers, as well as increase the amount of potential regulation on the industry. If they legalize it, they can actually keep a closer eye on the different activities.
• It will increase the countries revenue. We can even use Sikkim as an example. Neighboring country Nepal has legal casino gambling, and many chose to cross the border for their gambling needs. Sikkim saw this as a waste of potential income, and decided to create a casino in their border city. This has led to a much more prosperity than if they had not done anything.
• It will lower the amount of policing that has to be done to enforce the current laws. This will give their citizens more freedom, as well as helping. When people are free to gamble, they are visible to the government, making it much easier to tackle social problems like addictive gambling.