Even though it may take a long time to legalise online betting in India, the Sports Ministry has reportedly begun trying to frame a legislation for it.
India.- In order to -eventually- legalise sports betting in the country, the Sports Ministry of India has started studying a frame for a possible legislation. According to local reports, it has even held informal consultations with stakeholders in the government and will seek assistance from the UK government.
As reported by The Indian Express, a draft may take at least two years to be ready as the Ministry has just begun the groundwork for the legislation. The media outlet highlights Sports Secretary Injeti Srinivas visit to England, where he will sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), having sports betting as a key point.
The newspaper quotes a ministry official rating UK’s gambling law as “one of the most effective” and assuring that they “hope to understand their system and see if it is possible to introduce it in India.”
The illegal betting market in India has an estimated worth of US$150 billion, according to the International Centre for Sport Security. Local bookmakers and unregulated offshore websites make the most of it in the country, where betting is only legal on horse racing, taxed at 28 percent under GST.
The Sports Ministry believes they can use an eventual online betting tax to fund sports at central and state level: “The UK has overcome this (poor funding) through lottery and online betting. The department is preparing an MoU with the UK and the aspect of betting will be included therein in order to understand the mechanism and evolve a view on the possibility of its introduction in India,” they said in their presentation at a Group of Secretaries meeting.