New Delhi: There has been a commotion for a while now that betting in sports should be legalised in India with stringent rules in place. This thought cropped up after a betting scandal was unearthed involving players and people at top management positions of franchises in the Indian Premier League (IPL) in 2013.
Three players S Sreesanth, Ajit Chandila and Ankeet Chavan were arrested on the charges of spot-fixing while Chennai Super Kings Team Principal Gurunath Meiyappan was also arrested for having links with bookies. In the aftermath of the clean up in Indian cricket legalised betting in sports also became a regular topic of discussion.
Now as per ANI reports the Law Commission has recommended that gambling and betting in sports, including cricket, should be allowed as regulated activities taxable under the direct and indirect tax regimes and used as a source for attracting Foreign Direct Investment (FDI).
Law Commission has recommended that gambling and betting on sports, including cricket, be allowed as regulated activities taxable under the direct and indirect tax regimes and used as a source for attracting Foreign Direct Investment (FDI).
— ANI (@ANI) July 5, 2018
In its report titled ‘Legal framework: Gambling and sports betting in India’, the commission said it is not possible to ban betting and gambling completely so “effectively regulating” it is the “only viable solution”. It was also recommended that the operation can be run through cashless transactions tracked with a mandatory usage of PAN (Permanent Account Number) to avoid money laundering.
It is to be noted that gambling is a multi-billion dollar business worldwide. In UK alone gambling companies raked in £14bn or US$18.51 bn last year. This means additional tax revenue for the government and more jobs for people.
The law commission was earlier asked by the Supreme Court in July of 2016 to examine whether betting should be legalised and if a law can be framed around it.
This recommendation by Supreme Court was issued after the bench was hearing a case on Justice Lodha committee’s recommendations to reform Indian cricket.
In its order on July 18, 2016 the apex court bench had said: “The recommendation made by the committee that betting [on cricket] should be legalised involves the enactment of a law, which is a matter that may be examined by the law commission and the government for such action as may be considered necessary in the facts and circumstances of the case.”