By Taazakhabar News Bureau
In the election season, when people and interest groups of all shades and colors are openly voicing their demands, why should the online gaming industry be left behind?
The All India Gaming Federation (AIGF) a not-for-profit agency focusing on policy advocacy, research and discussion about the needs and demands of the online gaming industry has approached the committees drafting the BJP and Congress party manifesto to include regulation of online gaming in their manifestos.
All India Gaming Federation, CEO, Roland Landers said, “We wanted to highlight this critical issue of regulation in the online gaming industry, that has long been ignored but is the need of the hour and hence have sent our suggestions to the respective committees highlighting the benefits that will accrue to all stakeholders.
The online gaming industry can generate substantial revenues to the exchequer, create jobs, ensure responsible gaming and also curb and eliminate illegal activities like match-fixing and money laundering if brought under formal regulation and taxed rationally.
Gaming is a State subject in India and each State has its own Gaming Acts. While most of these Acts are archaic in nature, gaming businesses have gone digital over the years and hence a Central regulatory framework for the Online Gaming industry is the ideal way forward.
In July 2018, the 21 st Law Commission of India in its 276th report stated – “Accordingly, the Commission reaches the inescapable conclusion that legalizing betting and gambling is not desirable in India in the present scenario. Therefore, the State authorities must ensure enforcement of a complete ban on unlawful betting and gambling.
However, incapability to enforce a complete ban has resulted in a rampant increase in illegal gambling, resulting in a boom in black-money generation and circulation. Since it is not possible to prevent these activities completely, effectively regulating them remains the only viable option”
Thiruvananthapuram MP and senior Congress Leader Shashi Tharoor introduced a Private Member’s Bill, called Sports (Online Gaming and Prevention of Fraud) Bill in Lok Sabha on 28th December 2018. The Bill, 2018 aimed to introduce an effective administration to maintain the integrity of sports in India by preventing and penalizing sports fraud and for regulation of online sports gaming.
AIGF has been at the forefront of advocating for a regulated Online Gaming marketplace in India so that the malpractices of the black markets are eliminated. We sincerely hope that both the BJP and Congress consider the recommendations of the Law Commission of India positively and to favor our humble request to include regulating of online gaming in their respective manifestos.
The AIGF is committed to dealing with issues pertaining to the online gaming industry through knowledge papers, conferences, events, discussions, press briefings etc. Since inception in 2016, AIGF has been in the forefront, working with relevant policymakers to demonstrate the benefits of having a regulated marketplace here.