Future of Indian gambling landscape mapped out at ICE

14 February 2014

Many of the organisations who will have a major stake in an expanded Indian gambling sector met in London last week at ICE Totally Gaming, officially the world's largest business to business gaming event.  The one day summit, held on Tuesday 4th February, was attended by over 100 delegates who made the journey to London to hear speakers including Justice Mudgal, who covered the status of regulatory readiness for gaming in India, Mr Kamlesh Vijay, CEO Sugal and Damani Group who focussed on the potential development of lotteries and Rajpal Singh, Director FICCI, who provided an expert summary of the business environment for the gaming industry in India.

 

Reflecting on the India Seminar Neeraj Kansal, Secretary, Sports Authority of India said: "The aim was to provide delegates with an objective and detailed understanding of the current situation in India. I think everyone is looking towards India.  They all want to know what the regulations are going to be like and we have told them it is some time away but one good thing is that they all want it to be regulated."

 

He continued: "In India gambling falls within the realms of the state government and some of the state governments have already started allowing it. Lotteries have been going on for quite a while, casinos have been present in Goa and Sikkim and the online lottery is gradually picking up. The Indian gaming industry is going to move to the next level when all of the states allow it."

 
According to Neeraj Kansal the tax revenues arising from a regulated and expanded gaming sector will be put to good use.  He explained: "States are selling the idea of allowing gambling and betting to the population on the grounds that the money (tax yields) will be used for development, education and broader social welfare programmes.  That is definitely the case and an important part of the overall proposals.  Elsewhere some of the state governments see gambling as part of a bigger tourism proposition and as a consequence a major source of revenue."

 

Poker in India, and India poker market had a dedicated session. The panel discussion on poker and rummy got very good feedback and generated a lot of interest. Top gaming companies showed interest to offer poker to the Indian audience.

Anuj Gupta, CEO of Adda52.com was one of the panelists in the poker session. He mentions: 

“The legality of Poker still has to be completely established in India. There are two key cases whose judgement will shape the poker Industry. One is the Delhi High court  appeal against the lower court opinion and the other more importantly is the supreme court  case ( Mahalakshmi rummy case)  that will define if games of Skill can be operated as proper business ventures with the legal cover it carries.”

Event promoter and chairperson of India Gaming Summit, Albert Climent, explains: "The first ever India gaming summit has been a success. Thanks to everyone involved for their support. Hopefully next one will be bigger and better, and we can have all Indian gaming community and interests represented to continue a healthy and necessary discussion"

 

 



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