Last Updated by Nancy Sharma on March 27, 2023
Gambling has been a part of rich Indian culture since ancient times. But when it comes to the gambling status in India; it’s neither legal nor illegal.
Gambling laws in India are some 150 years old which needs to be improvised. Gambling is accepted equally in both traditional and modern avatars. We suggest it’s always better to know the gambling laws of your respective country before you start playing at online casinos.
On this page, we have briefly explained the gambling laws across various states of India. Let’s get started!
Gambling is defined as a game of chance or game of skill but gambling legislation in India has excluded game of skill from its gaming purview. Gambling laws in India comprise of the laws which are in effect throughout India’s all states, union territories, and the separate laws and regulations that different states can have individually. Each state doesn’t need to have the same gambling
This is the general gambling law in India considered mainly as public gaming act. It consists of relevant authorities and legislation, license application & restrictions, digital media, etc. PGA 1867 is effective throughout India but states are independent of imposing any other gambling laws if needed. Take a look at what the law says:
Online gambling was never in the scenario in the old age public gaming act. So, it is possible to enjoy online casino games without worrying that they are legal or illegal. You can play many casino games like slots, online poker, lottery, tennis betting, cricket betting, and much more!
India is a diverse country. There is no straight answer to this question as it depends on the game and location. Gambling is legal in some parts of India like Goa, Sikkim, etc. whereas for other states it is completely banned and illegal. You can be fined and jailed if found betting.
The primary focus of gambling legislation is gaming and common gaming houses ( traditional brick-mortar casinos). However, it is not stated anywhere in the Indian gambling act that it is illegal to play at online casino sites. So it hardly makes any difference as all the foreign casino sites are approachable to Indian players.
The gambling act clearly differentiates between games of skill and games of chance as can be seen in the table below:
|Games of skill||Games of chance|
|Rummy, Bridge, Poker||Slot games|
|Chess, Carom||RNG-table games|
It is legal to participate in all the skill-based games if regulated appropriately whereas it is illegal to play chance-based games such s roulette, baccarat, online slots, blackjack.
Exceptions are always there as both categories of games i.e. game of chance and skill are 100% legal to play in locations like Goa, Sikkim, Dadra, Nagar Haveli, and Daman & Diu.
Different states have different gambling laws in India. But, don’t worry it’s not as complex as it seems to be. You just have to get a brief of the laws of the state you are playing at. The gaming industry of India consists of regulated and unregulated gaming. It can be broadly classified into 6 categories. Take a look!
In India, there are 28 states and 9 UT’s. It is mandatory for all the states and Union territories in India to abide by the laws of the PGA act 1867. But the state’s legislative are given the authority to impose new laws that will be valid within their own territory only.
Like, gambling is completely restricted in states like Assam and Odisha as there are chances of some criminal activities due to diversity in the population. Whereas, Goa and Sikkim have taken the initiative to make sports betting totally legal in land-based as well as online casinos. Let’s check the perspective of individual states!
Gambling is not an offense and there are no such laws mentioned in 150-year-old Indian gambling law that states it is illegal to play in online casinos. So, the good news is it is completely legal to play online casino games.
Many of the gambling states like Punjab, Madhya Pradesh, and UP still follow PGA 1867 act, while other states like Odisha, Maharashtra, Delhi and, Sikkim have executed their own laws that regulate gambling into their own territory.\
Now, talking about the IT act 2000, regulates and maintains cyber activities in India. It aims to protect users from suspicious digital activities that may damage them. Under this act, an internet service provider (ISP) has the right to block such foreign operators.
The other hurdle faced by punters in India is to find a convenient payment method. Users have to transfer money to online bookies using Neteller, Skrill and that too is not guaranteed that the transaction will be successful. To get rid of this the regular users have started using E-wallets like Google pay, PayTm, etc. to avoid any legal issues.
All thanks to the internet and advanced technology Indian users can access all their favorite casino sites. Gambling in India has gained momentum in the past few years, so watching the Indian traffic many foreign sites have especially enhanced their versions that include Indian classic games to drive more Indian players to their sites.
You can visit our recommended list of best foreign online casino sites. We guarantee you’ll not regret it as all the sites use RNG technology to conduct fair and unbiased game sessions!
All the casino game providers are authorized and legal authorities that ensure safety as well as unbiased gameplays. No doubt they are all located offshores but it is completely legal to avail of their services while sitting at any corner of the world.
Many trusted and reputed organizations such as eCOGRA and iTechLAbs keep conducting regular audits and inspections to make sure there are no such issues as money laundering, frauds, or rigged casinos. Let’s discuss the top 3 gaming authorities worldwide!
NetEnt, licensed by Malta gaming authority; is known as a pioneer of casino gaming providers. They provide exclusive gaming solutions to the world’s leading casino operators. Indian users are allowed to access all the games provided by NetEnt. You’ll find many games like Slots, jackpot games, and live casino tables.
Just make a wish and evolution gaming will make it true. Evolution Gaming is the favorite destination for almost all players worldwide. This company also holds a license from MGA. They are known best for their unlimited casino gaming options like blackjack tables, baccarat, Bollywood live roulette, and much more.
Ezugi is another competitor known for its customizable platform. Their optimized software allows you to access the games on smartphones, desktops, or Tablets. You’ll find Indian classic games such as Andar Bahar online game, Teen Patti on their platform. They aim to become a leading live dealer provider across the casino industry.
Gambling laws in India are confusing, isn’t it? One can’t understand easily at first glance that it’s legal or unregulated to play casino games. It has been a subject of debate and the judiciary has tried many times to get a single solution. However, the internet with advanced technology brought a big revolution in the online gambling industry.
You’ll be amazed to know that India is a great hub for gambling and the economic value of the Indian gambling industry is worth about US$60 billion. It includes sports betting, horse racing, lotteries, games of skill, the game of chance, and many other prize competitions.
So we always advise our viewers to get a brief knowledge about the legal terms and conditions of your selected casino (land-based or online) to avoid any unwanted legal conflicts!