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The Ins and Outs of Online Gambling in India: Laws and Legislation Explained

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Needless to say, the online gambling industry has dominated the world by storm. In a nutshell, gaming industries from across the globe are thriving. In particular, the Indian market has experienced significant growth throughout the last couple of years. More and more players are trying their hand out at casino games and just in general experience what the gambling world has to offer.

Whether they’re raising their stakes at floating casinos in India, abroad or online, Indian players have expressed a keen interest in gambling. This is illustrated in some stats and figures; by the end of 2020, the Indian market generated over 90 billion in Indian Rupees.

Whilst all this sounds great, there is one issue that India has been dealing with for years. Even though we are living in 2021, Indian lawmakers still abide by ancient gambling laws, some of which are over 154 years old! So, what does this mean for players and casino operators?

An Insight into India’s Gambling Laws

 

With reference to the Indian Constitution, it is stated that all forms of gambling are regulated at state level. In other words, this mean that each Indian state has its own laws and legislations when it comes to gambling, particularly when it comes to online casino games. Needless to say, players and operators aren’t happy about this since it’s severely impacting the industry.

This all boils down to one thing. As mentioned in earlier sections of this post, India remains stuck in the past as far as gambling rules are concerned. A prime example of this is the Public Gaming Act of 1867. This 134 legislative document was published during the British role. Evidently, such documents don’t make sense now that most of us have witnessed the advent of the internet and the continuous developments made in the technological field.

But alas, Indian lawmakers beg to differ. Let’s take a look at some statements in the Public Gaming Act of 1867. For starters, the operation of Indian casinos is strictly prohibited. So, is the assisting and visiting of these venues. On top of that, financial gambling, devices and anything remotely related to gambling is also forbidden. In fact, you can face a ₹200 fine or even face up to 3 months in prison.

The Act also defines gambling into two separate categories – Games of Chance and Games of Skill. The problem with this lies here – one cannot completely class a casino game as a Game of Skill or Chance. This is because certain games have hints of both skill and chance.

At the time of writing, India has identified only 13 card games as games of skill, including rummy and poker. As far as online betting goes, horse racing and cricket betting also fall under this category. Without a doubt, lots of reforms are in order if lawmakers want to see the industry really thrive in the years to come.

The Problem with Online Gambling

 

All this brings us to the main topic of this discussion – online gambling in India. Evidently, there is a dire need for more sensible laws to be imposed. Since lawmakers are still adamant to stick to incredibly archaic laws, this is causing a lot of problems for casino operators who want to set up shop in India.

What’s even more surprising is that all these acts and laws don’t even given an appropriate definition to what online gambling is. As of now, only states like Nagaland, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh have chosen to update their anti-gambling policies. On top of that, they have also stated where they stand with online gambling. So far, it’s not good news.

 

Very recently, the state of Andhra Pradesh published its Gaming Ordinance. Initially, casino operators thought this would benefit them, but once again they couldn’t be more wrong. In other words, if you’re an operator, you can rule out the possibility of having online casinos set up in this state for the time being. On top of that, the ordinance has also issued a ban on all online games including games of skill. Of course, casino operators aren’t very happy about this and rightly so. In fact, they plan on appealing this at the Supreme Court.

That said, there is some good news to report here. As of now, the Supreme Court of Andhra Pradesh has stated that games of skill aren’t really linked to gambling and operators who offer these services are allowed to do us under the Indian Constitution.

Still, it’s not all sunshine and rainbows for casino operators who want to offer casino games and services in the country. In fact, operators have had to deal with more acts such as the Information Technology Act of 2000. Given that it’s all about gambling one would think that the government is actually thinking about adequate solutions that would make both parties happy.

But alas, we’re back in square one. This act caused more harm than good as the blocking servers restricted operators from offering their services to Indian players. What’s more, we also have yet another example where no appropriate definition is given to online gambling. Let’s face it, the world is living and breathing gambling at this point. After all the industry is worth billions nowadays – so how can one not explain what online gambling is? The mind boggles.

We understand that lawmakers want to curb the rise of unregulated gambling from dodgy casinos, however, sticking to ancient laws will cause more problems in the long run.

 

Players Can Still Enjoy the Online Casino World

 

That said, there is a silver lining. Whilst operators still have to long road ahead of them, players can still enjoy their time online. In fact, you’ll find lots of reputable providers listed on Casinos-india.in. Given that this is an affiliate partner, the games and bonuses are obviously not offered by them. Instead, you are offered trusted offshore casino partners that are legally allowed to offer their services to Indian players.

As you can see, things aren’t so bad for players. That said, there are still some regulations you should keep in mind. Whilst you are required by law to choose an offshore licensed platform, it’s still your safest bet. In this way, you can avoid getting scammed by dodgy providers that still manage to slip through the cracks even though the situation is heavily regulated. Trust us when we say that rogue casinos offer rigged games and you’ll probably never get your winnings. In other words, avoid at all costs.

You can sign up to platforms that clearly state that they are licensed by reputable gaming bodies such as the Malta Gaming Authority.

One also has to keep in mind the legal gambling age. In this case, it’s generally 18 and over. However, some online casinos will require to be over 21 years of age. So, make sure you read all the Terms and Conditions carefully when you track down your desired provider. Finally, you can also join an offshore casino if it is Rupee-friendly. You can also avail from alternatives that allow conversions.

The Benefits of Legalizing Online Casinos

 

At this point, it’s fair to say that Indian gambling laws are all over the place. We can only hope that the situation changes over time. At the end of the day, the market and India in general can benefit from the legalizing and regulation of online casinos.

Whilst we acknowledge that there is a problem with unregulated gambling, the right regulations can mark a significant change in the way things are carried out in the country. Strict laws that don’t make sense will not solve anything; on the contrary, these will cause of more uproars by casino operators and in general more confusion. Simply put, the country needs to stick to one legislation that is able to fully regulate and license games of skill. The laws in place can then be supported by further regulations created by gaming bodies.

Given that Indian players are allowed to sign up to offshore platforms, lawmakers should consider making it official in India. In this way, India will get more recognition, whilst players can get a taste of the best online casino games, bonuses and more. Above everything else, they’ll still be signing up to safe and secure platforms that do things by the book.

Of course, a complete reform is needed when it comes to online gambling. That said, some progress has been made. For example, in states like Maharashtra, casino operators and lawmakers are constantly in talks with regard to how they can legalize and regulate online gambling. At this point, nothing is confirmed, but it’s a start.

In the long run, we really think that India can benefit form a regulated market. In fact, some statistics suggest that the country is losing over $140 million per year due to unregulated gambling. This can be solved if both casino operators and lawmakers can come to an agreement on how to offer a licensed and regulated market.

At the time of writing, the growth behind India’s online gambling market is driven by the middle class and the continuous development of the internet and advanced technologies. With a 50% penetration rate, there are 560 million internet users in the country. Needless to say, this is great considering India is in second place after China.

All we’ll say is don’t understatement the Indian market even though it’s one of the smaller ones. Clearly, it’s making it’s mark on the world and it’s very obvious that casino operators and players are keen. Keep in mind that this is something that wasn’t available in the past. Of course, lifestyles became more comfortable over the years. This also meant that people started expressing an interest in different things – online casino is one of them.

Legalizing online casinos will also offer more jobs. Without a doubt, this would be extremely beneficial to India since the country can compete within this competitive market. This can open more doors to more start-up businesses within the e-Commerce and iGaming sectors. On top of that, the Indian economy will also benefit from all this. Other job opportunities can also crop up if this is done properly. Some of these include employment within software development companies and online payments.

At the end of the day, a regulated market will not only put lawmakers’ minds at rest, but it also creates a safe space for players and operators who just want to do things by the book. This can be achieved if one carries out regular audits of casino operators that have been approved and regulated by the government.

This is the only way that the situation can be monitored and one is able to distinguish a good casino from a bad one.

Without a doubt, the interest in the online gambling world won’t be dying away any time soon. So let’s hope Indian lawmakers can get on board with more adequate regulations that make sense in this day and age.

 

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1xBet to share vision for betting’s future at iGB Live!/iGB Affiliate Amsterdam

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1xBet to share vision for betting's future at iGB Live!/iGB Affiliate Amsterdam

 

‘A glimpse into the future and a chance to see what the industry will be like tomorrow’ is how Alex Sommers, Director of Affiliate Marketing at 1xBet, described the opportunities that he believes will be available to visitors attending the forthcoming iGB Live!/iGB Affiliate Amsterdam which is taking place across 28 September – 1 October at the RAI, Amsterdam.

The leading online brand which is the Diamond Sponsor for the affiliate event series, believes the long gap between major in-person gaming events has made industry professionals hungry for knowledge and networking. He explained: “We are confident that brands will be looking to the future. There was a long pause between major exhibitions, and we’re all clearly gathering here for big plans. And given that such a variety of companies will be represented in one place, it seems that we will discuss all aspects of the betting industry in general. Starting from the work undertaken by brands during the conditions that were in place last year, and ending with the new challenges that will face us.”

Presenting a compelling and passionate case for in-person and the reasons why the industry will be out in force at the Amsterdam-based shows, he argued: “Of course technology allows you to arrange a call with partners on the other side of the world in just a couple of clicks, but we are convinced that live interaction is a much more enjoyable method of communication. We are all human beings who enjoy interacting, communicating and meeting at events such as exhibitions.

“Moreover, at large events, there is always a festive atmosphere and the whole scale of the industry is felt. These emotions cannot be conveyed in the same way via virtual meetings. We’ve made big plans and look forward to meeting old acquaintances.”

The focus is firmly on partnerships both existing and new. “Many meetings with current partners are planned plus we also expect to meet new faces – all the time discussing interesting proposals and ideas ‘ he stated.

“Exhibition days are challenging but incredibly interesting. Our staff get up early in the morning and return late at night. And in the meantime – dozens of meetings and negotiations are planned. Such events help to unite our team even more, we get to not only know our competitors better but also ourselves. Therefore, we look at iGB only in the most positive way. We look forward to our trip to Amsterdam and invite everyone to chat and discuss partnership opportunities with us. There are very specific areas in which we will act, but we like to keep our cards close to our chest – what we can divulge now though is that people will be pleasantly surprised as we share our vision of innovations that will be introduced in the field of betting!”

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Soft2bet – celebrating 5-years of success at iGB Live!/iGB Affiliate Amsterdam

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Soft2bet – celebrating 5-years of success at iGB Live!/iGB Affiliate Amsterdam

 

Soft2bet, the casino and sportsbook platform, will be in celebratory mood when the industry gathers at the forthcoming iGB Live!/iGB Affiliate Amsterdam (28 September – 1 October). Not only is the brand the show’s biggest exhibitor and sponsor, but it will also be marking its’ 5th anniversary – a landmark that’s seen it grow exponentially, expanding from just a couple of employees to its’ current headcount of 700 industry professionals. The company’s PR Director, Hazma Afifi, provides his thoughts on what to look out for in Amsterdam.

What are you looking to achieve from your presence at iGB Live!/iGB Affiliate Amsterdam – what are your key objectives?

HA: “Attending iGB Live!/iGB Affiliate Amsterdam will allow us to network, build professional contacts, and strengthen the connections we already have. Moreover, we are very excited about the event as we know it holds its niche in finding interesting subjects and attracting key industry thought leaders. In addition, we are looking to share the knowledge and the company’s achievements with other professionals to positively affect the iGaming industry. We have chosen to take the stage at iGB Live!/iGB Affiliate Amsterdam to connect with more qualified industry decision-makers and have an immediate interaction with the customers. Of course, that would enable us to establish and deepen those relationships, as well as allow us to interact with other peers and establish exciting new partnerships.”

What do you think the major industry talking points/trends will be at show?

HA: “Over time, the iGaming industry has revealed many revolutions and these reforms go on and have evolved to introduce some technological advances as well. I believe the key topics will revolve around cryptocurrencies in the iGaming world, regulatory regimes, changing consumer habits, virtual reality casino games, and I’m confident there will be many more talking points – which is an important part of why people attend live events.”

It’s the company’s 5th birthday this month: how will you be celebrating the landmark and what have been the highlights of the last five years?

HA: “In celebration of Soft2Bet’s 5th anniversary, we threw a marvellous party for all of our employees that included international and local artists. In addition, we have prepared team-building activities to help bond with each other and also have a great time. The past five years were beneficial for establishing a number of unique brands and delivering a more enjoyable experience for customers. Over the last five years Soft2Bet has expanded and developed from having just a couple of employees to over 700 industry professionals, which I regard as being our biggest single accomplishment.”

What’s unique about the services that you offer?

HA: “Soft2Bet’s multi-brand line-up comprises ten unique casinos and sportsbook projects, with new brands, games, and functionality integrated monthly. We offer thousands of casino games from both industry-leading casino providers as well as smaller developers. Soft2Bet builds its casino platforms utilizing the most advanced and most reliable technologies. Moreover, we invest all the necessary resources to produce everything in-house and deliver ready-to-use completely licensed brands that target customers across a range of regulated markets. When it comes to our brands, the design and layout are crucial because they affect how our audience perceives the project. We pay a lot of attention to functionality, loading speed, and sharp graphics. In addition, Soft2Bet makes sure to add gamification elements to the brands to further engage users by allowing them to play games within games.”

What impact has Covid-19 and the restrictions imposed on populations throughout the world had on your business? Has Covid led to more people playing online?

HA: “Lockdown has impacted the iGaming world in many jurisdictions and we have seen a climb in the growth of visitors to our casino and sportsbook websites. The pandemic has caused a fundamental change in the way the conventional gambling industry used to work. Of course, this has influenced the gambling behaviour of players, so Soft2Bet takes special care when onboarding brand-new clients and makes sure to take steps to permanently strengthen and promote a safe gambling environment.”

To run a successful online casino business how important is it to find the right partner?

HA: “Choosing the right partner is extremely important. It strengthens our record of knowledge, proficiency, and resources available to create more solid products and reach a vaster audience. When we put all of these together, accompanying the 360-degree evaluation, the business can skyrocket. The right business partnership means reinforcing the overall ideology of the entire company.”

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Rightlander partners with BetBull

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Rightlander partners with BetBull

 

Supplier to help tier one operator improve affiliate compliance

Rightlander.com, the ground-breaking compliance platform has signed a deal with BetBull to help them improve affiliate compliance and boost responsible gambling measures.

Nicole MittonHead of Customer Success at Rightlander.com, said: “It’s great to see operators like BetBull partnering with Rightlander to ensure adherence to advertising regulations. These efforts are not only noteworthy from a regulatory point of view, but are also a solid indicator that BetBull are invested in protecting the interests of their stakeholders, affiliates and players in regulated markets.”

Rightlander will offer its technology which encompasses a comprehensive range of affiliate compliance tools which include the Automated Compliance Monitor, a PPC Monitor and a Proactive Affiliate Finder allowing BetBull to remain proactive and in control of their affiliate marketing.

Gabrielle Mallia, BetBull said: “We decided to opt for Rightlander because of its ability to give further visibility into our affiliate’s practices. The PPC Monitor is particularly key in allowing us to ensure adherence to policies specifically related to keywords and geos of promotion. Rightlander increases the efficiency in our compliance monitoring with its wide scope and allows us to quickly identify any breaches should they occur.”

The Automated Compliance Monitor helps detect non-compliant content across territories including the United Kingdom, Sweden, Denmark, Australia and the United States. The monitor flags potential violations such as missing terms and conditions, outdated offers, incorrect marketing assets allowing BetBull to remain compliant according to their jurisdiction’s regulations.

The Proactive Affiliate Finder scans millions of web pages every month to identify new and prominent sites and the innovative PPC Monitor identifies harmful ads to stop them from appearing on an operator’s branded keywords.

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