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Ongoing Legislation Discussion of Online Betting in India

A closer look at the ongoing legislation discussion with regard to licensed online betting services in India. 

Ongoing Legislation Discussion of Online Betting in India
First Published Oct 17, 2023, 5:57 PM IST

In recent months India has been the talk of the iGaming and real money gambling industry due to their ongoing discussions and debate concerning new legislation. 

Although the future of each state isn't fully clear yet, an overall consensus is beginning to emerge. These new legislation talks are ongoing due to the country's massive influx of popularity in the online gambling sector.

Fast growing economy

India is undoubtedly one of the fastest-growing economies, not only due to its vast size and population, but also due to its developments in certain industries. 

In 2021, online betting in India alone was valued at an estimated 79 billion INR. This signified around a fifteen percent increase, a huge jump in terms of real growth from the previous year, which was estimated at a value of 69 billion INR. 

Indian online gambling's attractiveness and growth in the country may have been down to its lack of formal legislation surrounding online gambling. However, new regulations will help keep players and companies safer online.

Where can Indians gamble?

Currently, no federal act regulates the online gambling industry directly, and each state is allowed to create their own rulings on the subject.

India only has a small handful of states where online gaming has regulated legislation. The Indian Gambling Act of 1867 attempts to fully ban every type of gambling. 

However, as it has never been updated to consider modern-day forms of gambling, such as online gambling and iGaming, it can be interpreted as not including these as it was enacted long before the internet was even created.

For example, states such as Daman, Sikkim and Goa have been legally and officially allowed to gamble online since 2022, with Sikkim also allowing Indians to play the online lottery.

Advertising legislation in India

Although Indian online casinos are not permitted to market, promote or advertise anything relating to sports betting, casinos or online gambling on any websites, it is not illegal for offshore and non-Indian casino businesses to do so. 

This loophole allows these offshore online casinos to target Indian players and bettors as long as they accept Indian Rupees.

Popular Indian betting sports

Some of the most popular sports to bet on today in India today are the following:

  • Cricket (e.g., the Indian Premier League, the Pakistan Super League, the English Vitality Blast T20 League, the Bangladesh Premier League, the SA20 (South Africa) Cricket League, the Tamil Nadu Premier League, the Big Bash League Australia, and the Caribbean Premier League)
  • Soccer/Football (e.g., La Liga, the Premier League, Ligue 1, Serie A, the Bundesliga and the Eredivisie are just a few examples)
  • Badminton
  • Kabaddi
  • Tennis
  • Table Tennis

At today's best Indian online sports betting sites, it's also possible to bet on more than 40 other major global sports, such as Boxing, MMA/UFC, eSports, Cycling, Gold, and Motorsports/Formula 1.

Many igaming fans like to bet on the NFL (American Football/National Football League), NHL (Ice Hockey/National Hockey League), NBA (Basketball/National Basketball Association), and the MLB (Major League Baseball), to name just a few popular sports.

To find out more about some of today's most trusted Indian online bookmakers and casino sites, one of the best sites you can turn to is the official website. 

This site has the latest reviews for several fully licensed and regulated betting sites, such as 10CRIC, PariMatch, MegaPari, Betway, bet365, BetTilt, Cric Baba, and Dafabet. It also has a FREE cricket match predictor mobile app that can be downloaded and installed onto most smartphones in just seconds.

Legislation Update

By the end of the year, the legislation in India around online gambling will likely become clearer. For now, though, the answer as to whether it's legal for offshore online casinos to operate freely in India is yes! 

However, operators must still obey Foreign Exchange Management Laws, Consumer Protection, IT Laws, Money Laundering Prevention Laws, etc.

Already during January 2023, the government of India has announced new rules regarding regulating online gambling in the country by making a collection of self-regulating bodies to control the sector. 

Together with the government, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology has also announced that it might bring in changes and updates regarding online gambling laws and regulations. 

For the time being, people living in India will continue to play casino games in the real money mode and place sports bets at offshore gambling sites that are controlled by foreign operators. 

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