Laws Behind Gambling in India

illegal gambling

Like many other countries, India has various gambling laws depending upon which region you live in. The country allows each state to manage and govern gambling in its district. This makes sense considering that each district will have different feelings towards gambling.

We’re going to take an in-depth look at these often confusing regulations and how they apply to the residents there. If you enjoy online gambling, be sure to check out Lucky Dice with its guides, tips, suggestions and more.

Gambling in India

As each Indian state can govern itself in regard to gambling, you’ll likely find specific laws about gambling in each one. Take Goa as an example. They have totally legal operations in their state – in fact, it’s one of only 3 states in India that allow gambling.

The country was put under strict gambling laws thanks to the Public Gambling Act of 1867. This law put a ban in place for anyone wanting to operate or manage a public gambling house and breaking this leads to some hefty repercussions. These include a big fine or even 3 months in prison.

This act also made it illegal for anyone to even frequent a location that offers gambling activities – with a penalty of a fine or a month in prison.

States Where You Can Legally Gamble

At the time of writing, there are three states in India that offer legal gambling with casinos. They are the aforementioned Goa, Sikkim and Daman. Of those three, Goa has the biggest range of casinos with 6 land-based casinos and 4 floating casinos – basically casino ships that are moored.

The idea of floating casinos in India may sound like a strange one – but there’s an interesting reason why there are so many of them in Goa. Under the Public Gaming Act 1976, which Goa operates under, Casinos are only allowed to operate on either an offshore vessel or within a five-star hotel.

These special floating casinos include venues such as Casino Deltin, Casino Pride, Casino Pride II and Deltin Royale. The Pride Group and the Deltin Group run these. Sikkim has 2 casinos and Daman has 1.

Online Gambling

Online gambling is one of the biggest industries in several countries around the world. India is only just really catching up to these trendsetters and online gambling is still in its very early phases.

To date, the only state that has made any sort of attempt to legally operate an online casino, and its attempts were denied – even though many Indians were on board for some online gambling fun and wanted the proposal to pass.

Sikkim does have some online gambling though. The state allows residents to buy lotto tickets online. Apparently, People from other states can and do also use this service. It’s unsure whether any other states will follow Sikkim’s lead in bringing online gambling to the masses.

India passed an act in 2000 which started the regulation of certain internet activities, but this act itself doesn’t have any legislation in it about online gambling or betting. This uncertainty leaves the decision up to the courts of India, although they haven’t made it a priority and to this day it still hasn’t been resolved.

It is, however, for any casino or gambling operation in India to promote their casinos online with things like email marketing and ads or have any online casino of their own – no matter whether that’s sports betting, bingo or your more traditional casino games.

Casinos from other countries that aren’t India – AKA offshore casino operators – are allowed to offer casino services to Indian residents though. This is how many Indians enjoy their online gambling activities.


A majority of states in India have banned all gambling activities, with 3 being the exception – Goa, Sikkim and Daman. Off-shore casinos are still legal though and many Indians get their gambling action through one of these instead.

Who knows what the future holds for India though – could they be on the brink of legalizing gambling just like the above 3 territories?

About the author


Miller Willson

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