Rahul Arora Last Updated by on May 4, 2023

Is Teen Patti Legal or Illegal In India?

Teen Patti is an Indian card game deeply rooted in Indian culture, with people readily playing Teen Patti all over the country. Still, some legal inconsistencies have made playing Teen Patti illegal, and this game can’t be played legally in land-based casinos in India.

However, this does not relate to the international online casino platforms that welcome players from India and carry Teen Patti. These are in a legal gray area that allows Indians to play Teen Patti and other casino games legally. Read on as we expand this issue and answer once and for all if Teen Patti is legal in India.

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Is Teen Patti Legal in India?

In simple words: Teen Patti is not legally regulated in India. Now, to elaborate on this: Teen Patti is a game of chance, and it relies on luck and not the players’ skill. However, due to the confusing legal jargon, people in India don’t know if they can play this game legally.

Still, many online casino platforms that serve the Indian market have included Teen Patti in their game offer, meaning Indian players can still play Teen Patti, only they will have to take their fun online to offshore, international casinos.

Teen Patti is a gray legal zone in India; it is not legal, but it is not illegal.

Gambling Laws in India for Teen Patti

India’s official Federal Gambling Law, or PGA, is ancient, dating from 1867 when India was under British rule. Because of the legal jargon used in those days, the legal actions are not applicable today; the law saw some changes and updates, but it is still not in step with the current trends.

Per the law, it is illegal to set up a gambling venue in India, and it is illegal to visit a gambling venue in India. If an Indian person breaks the PGA rules, they will have to pay a ₹200 fine and serve three months in prison. Still, no one has been prosecuted or put in jail for this. Many states have amended and updated their state laws on gambling, thus allowing gambling and land-based gambling venues in Goa, Sikkim, Nagaland, and Maharashtra.

Some Indian states have changed their laws and have land-based casinos with Teen Patti, among other games.

Legality of Games of Skill vs. Games of Chance

Here is an excerpt from the definition of gambling taken from the Constitution of India: “…gambling includes any activity or undertaking whose determination is controlled or influenced by chance or accident or any activity or undertaking which is entered into or undertaken with a consciousness of the risk of winning or losing…”

As you can note, this definition talks about the acts that involve risking money and hoping to win money are generally considered gambling. Per the PGA 1867, there are two types of games, games of chance and games of skill:

  • Games of skill rely on the player’s skill and are not considered gambling; these include rummy, poker, horse racing, cricket, football, etc.
  • Games of chance are considered a true form of gambling and are not legal in India; these include casino games, sports betting, and Teen Patti.

The games of skill are defined by people knowing when to bet and when to fold and the types of moves or bets to make. The games of chance are defined as relying solely on chance, and the cards dealt, meaning the players are influenced by chance or accident.

Games of skill are considered legal; games of chance are considered illegal in India.

However, the Indian Apex Court decided in 1957 in the case of R.M.D. Chamarbaugwala versus Union of India that any gambling game like rummy or Teen Patti involving even a part of skill can be considered a game of skill. Thus, you can rest assured that even though the old PGA Law has a stricter definition, the current legal acts by India’s Supreme Court have changed the rules a bit in favor of relaxing the definitions.

More good news follows as none of these laws mentions online gambling. Since there is no mention of the legality of playing any of these games online, people can freely join an international casino platform hosted outside India and enjoy a game of Teen Patti.

Indians can play Teen Patti online on legal online casino platforms hosted outside India.

Where to Legally Play Teen Patti Online in India?

Regarding the legal playing of Teen Patti online, Indian players have plenty of options. However, our team of experts has reviewed most of these. Here we bring you a list of online casinos that respect the legal stipulations in India, have everything an Indian player may want, and carry an excellent selection of games, Teen Patti included.

For an online casino to be eligible to offer Teen Patti to its members legally, it should have a proper, up-to-date casino license. Next, to respect the Indian Information Technology Act of 2000, the online casino platform should accept deposits and withdrawals in Indian Rupees and accept the Indian-favorite payment methods like UPI, PayTM, PhonePe, Google Pay, Skrill, Neteller, Visa, MasterCard, MuchBetter, etc.

Only join online casino platforms that have Indian-favorite payment methods and accept ₹!

We suggest you look for and join an online casino platform with excellent welcome bonuses for its new members, a mobile version, or a mobile casino app. On top of having Teen Patti legal, it should have a long and varied list of other Indian-favorite casino games.

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Which state in India allows the legal playing of Teen Patti?

While the federal law prevents the legal playing of Teen Patti across India, states like Goa, Sikkim, Nagaland, and Maharashtra have updated their gaming laws, allowing the legal playing of Teen Patti.

Will you be prosecuted for playing Teen Patti in India?

While the PGA law states a ₹200 fine and up to three months in prison, no one has been fined for playing Teen Patti in India.

Do you have to pay taxes on your Teen Patti winnings in India?

If you win online Teen Patti in India, you will have to report and pay the federal income tax of 32%. If you play Teen Patti in one of the legal casinos in the states where Teen Patti is legal, the tax amount will be automatically withdrawn from your won amount.

In which casinos can you safely play Teen Patti online in India?

You can safely play Teen Patti online in offshore, international online casinos like the ones suggested here. These have all the licenses, payment methods, and other aspects that make it legal for Indians to play Teen Patti legally online. Some of them are 22Bet, 1xBet, Betway, 10Cric, PariMatch, etc.

What payment methods are accepted at offshore online casinos that provide Teen Patti?

Offshore online casinos that provide Teen Patti for Indians have most of the Indian-preferred payment methods like UPI, PhonePE, MuchBetter, Google Pay, Skrill, Neteller, Visa, MasterCard, etc. They also support deposits and withdrawals in Indian Rupees, further facilitating the playing of online Teen Patti.