Legalise gambling, betting in cricket and other games: Law Commission

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In its report, the Commission has recommended several changes in the law for regulating betting and generating tax revenues from it

The Hush Post: The Law Commission has recommended the legalising of betting and gambling in games, including the earning sport of cricket. The Commission has recommended that the betting and gambling in the games 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).

Media reported that the Commission has said in its report, “Legal Framework: Gambling and Sports Betting including Cricket in India”, recommending several changes in the law for regulating betting and generating tax revenues from it.

“Parliament may also enact a model law for regulating gambling that may be adopted by the states or in the alternative, Parliament may legislate in exercise of its powers under Articles 249 or 252 of the Constitution. In case legislation is made under Article 252, states other than the consenting states will be free to adopt the same,” the Law Commission report said.

The Law Commission has also made a recommendation to link Aadhar or PAN card of an individual indulging in betting and gambling, and making the transaction cashless to regulate illegal activities such as money laundering. The commission has also recommended amending the laws regulating Forex (foreign exchange) and India’s FDI policy to allow investments in the casino and online gaming industry, a report said.

“The Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999 and the Rules…made thereunder as also the Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) Policy…may suitably be amended to encourage Foreign Direct Investment in the casino/online gaming industry, lawfully permitting technological collaborations, licensing and brand sharing agreements, etc,” the Law Commission stated.

The Law Commission said that allowing FDI in the sports would “bring substantial amounts of investment to those states that decide to permit casinos, propelling the growth of the tourism and hospitality industries, while also enabling such states to generate higher revenue and employment opportunities.”

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