Indian state of Andhra Pradesh bans online gambling

Andhara Pradesh bans online gambling
10th Sep, 2020
Simon Colmenares Author Profile Photo Simon Colmenares

Breaking this undergoing rule could potentially make you face over a year in jail for repeated convictions. Including those who dare organize online betting platforms and events

This past Thursday, September 3rd, a decision was made by the Andhra Pradesh government in regards to online betting platforms. The information Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy, who is the head of the state cabinet, decided to ban online gambling and games such as rummy and poker alleging to be “for the protection of the youth”.

State president Somu Veerraju confirmed the measure after taking to social media some claims he made against iGaming prior to this ban. At the time he called for some gaming sites to be banned, stating that the industry has caused a negative impact in the economic development in the state and created addiction on players.

Tension with the chinese government rises yet again

This is the second time recently that the country has taken measures in regards to banning gaming and other apps in general. Rising tension with the chinese government has led the country to take out chinese games and platforms from being downloaded across India for privacy concerns as many users started to complain about their personal data being stolen and mismanaged out of borders.

Gambling is not actually blocked

In a weird turn of events, it turns out that gambling apps and websites offering any kind of gambling services won’t actually be blocked, they can still be accessed, but using said services can get you prosecuted.

Actually, an absence of legislation involving online gambling, has made this matter fall into a grey area.

Principal secretary at the state home department, Kumar Vishwajeet, added: “We are not saying we will block anything. We are saying that if we catch someone indulging in online gambling, we will put them in jail”.

That’s pretty much like being prohibited from eating cookies while your mom still leaves the cookie jar right in the middle of your kitchen… with the lid open.

The weird and ambiguous decision made by the Indian Authorities

Surely, it is difficult to understand and get the hang of this last statement made by the Indian government. The players do not get the fact that the online betting sites do not receive any penalties, while it is completely different for them.

For some players, the fact that the betting sites are blocked or shut down is great news.

They believe that it allows them to access any of them with ease as long as they do not get caught.

For other players, it is impossible to enter these sites due to the fear of getting imprisoned for it.

They consider the measurement to be a trap so that they can get caught quickly and easily by the authorities.

What the decision means for the industry in India

The Indian iGaming companies certainly have been struck by horrible news.

The new measurement taken by the government has reduced the number of active players to a rate that was never thought to be possible before the news was released.

Now, these companies would have to start making harsh decision that could shape their fates.

Some of them are thinking of focusing on a different jurisdiction, while others will make the heartbreaking decision of shutting down their operations once and for all.

Despite the fact that the companies will not get penalized for operating and offering gambling services, the simple fact that the players are afraid of gambling is enough for the betting companies to reconsider their business strategies.

Was the decision fair and needed?

Once the news were known all over the country, many citizens agreed with it and thought that it was the best decision to make due to the high rate of addicted players that were present in India.

As a matter of fact, the Asian country has witnessed a scandalous high rate of troubled gamblers in the last few years thanks to the introduction of betting sites.

India has not reached a stable point economically speaking, and the sudden rise of gambling addicts definitely does not help the cause a single bit.

Gambling addiction is an eye-catching issue that must never be taken slightly by a government or its citizens, so it is comprehensible why the authorities decided to make such a strong decision.

Why the Indian government did not block all the gambling sites?

This has been one of the most common questions asked by the Indian citizens and players since the measurement was first announced.

For some iGaming experts, the reason as to why the Indian government did not block this kind of sites is tax revenue.

iGaming platforms pay high amounts of money on taxes every year, and preventing them from operating in the country would cost the government a great deal of revenue that they cannot afford to lose.

By letting the betting sites work and offer gambling services, the Indian government has the right to request taxes and generate more income annually.

Moreover, the government knows that not all the players will stop gambling, so the betting sites that operate within Indian borders will always have a considerate amount of active players gambling.

The future of gambling in India

The gambling industry will not grow as expected after the new measurements taken by the Indian government.

It is unknown whether this strict measurement will be revoked in the near future or not, so the players are not able to do much for the time being.

In the meantime, those players that desire to gamble would have to take the huge risk of possible getting caught and be put in jail for a determined period of time.

10th Sep, 2020
Simon Colmenares