Is gambling banned in India? Yes, it is. The Public Gambling Act of 1867 bans gambling in India. However, that is not the end of the story. There are some exceptions to this rule. Horse Racing and Rummy are legal in India and you can bet on them without any trouble. Similarly, fantasy-based games such as Dream11 and others are ruled to be games of skill rather than games of chance and so they are legal as well.
Just like this, the interpretation of the archaic and ancient Public Gambling Act is also open to discussion and something like online gambling can benefit from that.
Is gambling banned in India?
Yes, but there is nothing in the law that says that online gambling is banned. This is simply because the internet did not exist when the law was framed. The penalty for gambling is capped at Rs.50 or a jail term of three months. Interestingly, no one has ever been charged for gambling online or gone to jail or punished for it. No one.
We don't think there is any doubt about the matter. Online gambling is legal by default because there is no law that says otherwise. It is important to point out, though, that we are not trained in the law to any extent. This is our opinion only and you should consult a lawyer for a more definitive answer.
We liken gambling online to the way that people go to Vegas or Macau and play the casino. They are gambling in places where it is legal and so there is nothing to stop them. They can even bring their winnings back to India without any trouble if they do end up having a lucky night out!
Online betting sites are also registered in countries where gambling is legal and so do not come under Indian law.