Playing games and cards for money has been a part of the Indian tradition for a long time. Whether it is playing card games on Diwali or playing fantasy games online! People and followers of sport have a big appetite for real money gaming! People love RMG so much that even the obscure, murky laws around RMG in India do not hinder them from doing what they love. But the problem with cricket betting, football betting or playing online poker is that it is, for the most part, widely unregulated.
There are no dedicated laws or an established framework for India’s online real money gaming activity right now. It is widely unregulated and a majority of it is underground.
Tax Potential Of Regulated RMG in India
According to a report back in March 2019 by KPMG on sports betting in India, the potential size of this market is upwards of $130 billion! By now, that market is expected to grow over INR 15 lakhs crores! Some reports also estimate that in 2016, India’s turnover from betting and gambling was approximately 7.5% of its GDP.
Even though most online betting operators have a 30% tax deduction on winnings, making this mandatory for all RMG websites will help the government generate thousands and lakhs of revenue that can be put to good use! Legalising RMG will also help people who do this illegally and come into a fray where their interests and information are protected! Moreover, regulating the same can also help in curbing black money, money laundering, and reducing corruption in sports.
This will also increase viewership number of sporting events and have a ripple effect on different industries such as broadcasting, sports franchises and tournaments! Having a properly structured legal framework around RMG activities, governments of countries such as Australia, UK, Italy have improved their tax revenues and also protected their consumers’ interests!
India is already halfway there, thanks to the stringent KYC measures levied by the betting sites. It is now up to the authorities to pave the way forward.