PTLB has reported that anti-match-fixing law of India is in pipeline. Although this is a belated move on the part of Indian government yet it is a good step in the right direction. Further, it has been argued in the report that mere anti-match-fixing law would not be suffice and Indian government must also take strict action against online gambling websites that are openly violating the laws of India. The full report has been reproduced here with prior approval.
Gambling laws in India are outdated and colonial in nature. They have been drafted many decades before and they need urgent rejuvenation keeping in mind the growing use of information and communication technology (ICT).
For instance, when gambling laws of India were drafted, the lawmakers of India could not foresee the possible advent of online gambling in India. As on date we have no dedicated online gambling laws in India. The online gaming and betting laws and regulations in India are still in a nebulous state and in most cases it is illegal to indulge in online gaming and betting.
The recent match-fixing scandal has opened the eyes of Indian government and it has decided to pass a law to curb such evil practices through a law. The same may be introduced in the monsoon session of the Indian parliament.
While doing so the Indian government must not miss the chance to regulate online gambling and betting in India as well. Presently many websites have been offering online gambling facilities in clear disregard of the Indian laws. There is an urgent need to clarify the legal position in this regard.
In fact, the law ministry has already started working on the proposed law and a dedicated team has been asked to look into every detail. As the head of these gambling rackets are located outside India, essential provisions in this regard must be incorporated in the proposed law.
There is also an urgent need to regulate e-commerce websites that are indulging in online gambling. In fact, the e-commerce websites in India must be regulated by Indian government whether they belong to online gambling or other e-commerce activities.
Only time would tell about the seriousness of the efforts of Indian government to curb the menace of gambling and betting in India.