Is it legal to play online casinos in India?

Online casinos offer all sorts of gambling forms to players right in the comfort of home. They accept players from different parts of the world, including online gamblers from India. However, as someone who lives in India, it is important to know the legality of playing at online casinos. You have to be certain you are not breaking any law, or you could be held liable, leading to fines and imprisonment.

For the record, no one has been arrested or persecuted in India for playing at online casinos. However, you have to carefully remember that the gambling laws in India are complex and outdated. For example, the Karnataka Police Act does not allow any gambling forms that involve real money, although a few states have already updated their gambling law. What makes Indian gambling law irrelevant is that it is written before the internet world. Hence, it is safe to say that the law does not have much to say about online gambling, more so with online casino sites.

State Gambling Laws 

The Public Gambling Act rules the gambling sector throughout India, but each state has the freedom to regulate its own gambling activities. So far, the Indian states that regulate gambling are Goa, Daman, and Sikkim. State gambling law in India varies from liberal to strict. India has no control over live casinos operated outside India, which means that Indian players can safely participate in such online gambling portals. Many Indian gamblers prefer playing at online casinos instead of land-based casinos as it helps them save money in the long run. They don’t need to travel to Indian states where gambling is legal. With online casinos, they can gamble anytime and anywhere they want to worry-free.

Gambling at online casinos 

Although Indian gambling law does not tackle much about online casinos as such was created way before the internet world, it does not necessarily mean that people can be lax with it. A quick search on the internet will give you vast options for online casinos that admit Indian players. However, it does not necessarily mean they can be all trusted. Hence, it is of utmost importance to do your research well.

Keep in mind that online casinos in India are only allowed if they are located outside India’s jurisdiction. More so, there are a few states in India does do not allow online casinos. So, you have to know these things beforehand and, if possible, play discretely. You also need to pay special attention to gambling licenses. For an online casino sites to operate in India and other parts of the world, it should have a gambling license. Such licenses are issued by jurisdictions and enable casinos to operate legal gambling websites in various countries in different parts of the globe. Some of the highly reputable licensing bodies for online gambling are UK Gambling Commission, Curacao, and Malta Gaming Authority. An online casino site that carries a license gives players confidence and peace of mind as such delivers a fair and secure online gambling experience.

What the future holds about online casinos in India?

The future of online casino sites in India is still uncertain as, for now, only offshore online casinos can accept Indian players. So far, only three Indian states have allowed all forms of casinos; online and land-based, and these are Goa, Sikkim, and Daman. In some states, you can’t find land-based casinos, but they allow participation in online casino sites, provided the site is situated outside India’s jurisdiction. However, it does not necessarily mean you can be lax in playing. It is best to play discretely.

It is evident that the number of online gamblers in India continues to rise as time passes by. Online gambling fans can only hope that the time will come when online gambling activities will be completely legal in India. It includes not only offshore online gambling sites but also online casino sites based in India. It will benefit not only online gamblers but also online gambling operators in India. The Indian government will eventually benefit from regulating online casinos as such helps control both the benefits and risks involved in online gambling.

Going back to the current Indian gambling law, it is completed unclear and outdated. There is no mention of online gambling because it was created before the internet world. There are recommendations to amend the law, but one thing is clear for now, each Indian state was given the freedom to regulate their gambling rules. We can only hope that the federal government of India can come up with a general online gambling law that will serve as the footprint for online gambling law in the entire country. For now, online gamblers can only play at online casino sites located outside India’s jurisdiction.

Disclaimer: Gambling involves an element of financial risk and maybe addictive. Please play responsibly and at your own risk. Subject to applicable laws.

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