• Legality of online poker in India

Is playing real money online poker on websites like adda52, pokerbaazi etc legal in india? How do i pay tax on any money i win from there
Asked 6 years ago in Civil Law

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10 Answers

games of chance are illegal, games that are based upon a preponderance of skill are not

2) in sikkim online online gambling and poker is legal but is limited to residents of sikkim

3) the Public Gambling Act of 1867, , makes it a crime to either run a “public gaming house” or to even be present at one, and provides criminal penalties for both.

4) India does not have any laws relating to online games , poker etc

5)As per Section 115BB of the Income Tax Act on poker winnings or winnings from any such card games etc. is 30%.

6) As per Section 194B of the Income Tax Act, on any winnings above Rs. 10,000/- it is the responsibility of persons organising or managing the event to deduct 30 per cent tax before releasing the winnings.

Ajay Sethi
Advocate, Mumbai
94695 Answers
7528 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

The Public Gambling Act of 1867, which applies to all of India, makes it a crime to either run a “public gaming house” or to even be present at one, and provides criminal penalties for both”.

As per Indian Contract Act wagering contract is also void.

However gambling in various forms is permissible many states in india like in Goa, Maharashtra etc.

So taking aid of the grey area in online poker games one can indulge in such games legally.

Devajyoti Barman
Advocate, Kolkata
22816 Answers
488 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

Under the Constitution, betting and gambling are state subjects under Entry 34 on List II of the Seventh Schedule. Different states have different laws regulating this and thus, there are vast differences in the regulation of this subject in India.

The central government law on this subject is the Public Gambling At, 1867.

Games(including online games) which involve gambling are vastly prohibited in India, inasmuch as, they have an element of betting/wagering involved. This is because wagering agreements are void under the Indian Contract Act. However, the same is not true for 'game of skills', because most state laws and the central statute exclude ‘games of skill’ from being categorised as acts of ‘gambling’.. Thus, game of poker if played as a game of skill, is perfectly legal.

Vibhanshu Srivastava
Advocate, Lucknow
9600 Answers
303 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

The Public Gambling Act of 1867, which applies to all of India, makes it a crime to either run a “public gaming house” or to even be present at one, and provides criminal penalties for both”. But it does not talk about online gaming.

Karnataka High Court in Indian Poker Association v. State of Karnataka, the Court ruled that playing skill games like poker in recreational club is permitted and no license is required for the same on 8th October 2013.

Under the Constitution, betting and gambling are State subjects under Entry 34 on List II of the Seventh Schedule

thus individual States do have the power to make their own legislation. To put it simply, the general laws of India concerning gambling apply unless a state specifically sanctions it. So most have sanctioned lotteries, which would otherwise certainly qualify as a game of chance, but they can still be permitted if the law provides it.

The States like "Sikkim" have licensed online gambling and online poker. It is up and running as well, and features several licensed poker sites, the largest of which is adda52.com which even has a team of sponsored Indian poker pros.

Most state laws and the central statute exclude ‘games of skill’ from being categorised as acts of ‘gambling’. Yet a ‘game of skill’ had not been defined under these laws. This caused much confusion till the Supreme Court in State of Andhra Pradesh versus K. Satyanarayana (1968) classified Rummy as a skill-based game.

Till date no other game has explicitly received such a judicial nod. However, a Madras High Court judgment concluding that a ‘game of skill’, if organised for profit, would still amount to ‘gambling’. As the appeal from the verdict in the Supreme Court was withdrawn before it could be finally decided, the legality of making a profit on such activities remains inconclusive.

As far as "Maharashtra" is concerned legal status of these card games is still not clear.

In 2012, according to media reports, some senior citizens who were arrested by police under the Bombay Prevention of Gambling Act, 1887 for playing Rummy and Bridge got relief from the Bombay High Court. The group was arrested and charged under the gambling laws despite both rummy and bridge being considered games of skill. The petitioners stated in their plea that they were playing rummy and bridge, which were neither wagering nor gambling under the Gambling Act.

Therefore, till the clouds of ambiguity remains regarding the "game of skill and gaming for profit" its better to stay away from these gaming sites who are organizing these games for profit.

Saurabh Yadav
Advocate, Gurgaon
50 Answers
1 Consultation

4.9 on 5.0

Public Gambling Act of 1867 bans such games in India which is based on luck, sikkim being an exception, few local people are allowed for the same.

As per the provisions of the Income Tax Act you have to pay 30% tax on the amount that you win from playing poker.

Also it is the responsibility of the person giving the amount to deduct money at the time of giving the same if the amount happens to be more than 10,000/-.

Seeing the grey area in the legislation you may go ahead and play the game online.

Anilesh Tewari
Advocate, New Delhi
18078 Answers
377 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

Hi, it is legal to play online .. The money that you earn from websites are transfered after deduction of tax ..

Hemant Chaudhary
Advocate, Gurgaon
4630 Answers
67 Consultations

4.9 on 5.0

You can pay income tax on your earnings from poker

2) if law is passed making it illegal then you would be penalised as per provisions of said act

Ajay Sethi
Advocate, Mumbai
94695 Answers
7528 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

No law can be made which has a retrospective effect. If any law is made then it will make it unlawful from the day when the law is bought into effect.

Regards

Anilesh Tewari
Advocate, New Delhi
18078 Answers
377 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

Online poker is legal in India. India is one of the emerging countries in terms of online poker and worth around $120. ... As per Indian constitution, gambling comes within state subject and therefore the central act is applicable in all the states which do not have any particular gambling laws

In this historic observation passed by the Karnataka High Court in Indian Poker Association v. State of Karnataka, (WP Nos. 39167 to 39169 of 2013) the Court ruled that playing skill games like poker in recreational club is permitted and no license is required for the same on 8th October 2013.

Despite the limited applicability of the High Court verdict, the decision is a welcome first step in recognizing poker as a game of skill and would open floodgates for online and offline poker especially in Karnataka.

As per Indian Constitution, gambling comes within state subject and therefore the central act is applicable in all the states which do not have any particular gambling laws.

T Kalaiselvan
Advocate, Vellore
84896 Answers
2191 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

What will be the penalty I play poker online and after sometime it becomes law that playing poker online is illegal? Will i be able to pay taxes on poker winnings before the law was passed?

It is felt that it is legal for online poker players to play on legal poker sites in India, but the rub here is that it isn’t all that clear what would constitute a legal online poker site in India, and remains a grey as far as the law is concerned.

This is what is going on right now, as online poker players in India are just playing poker and generally don’t worry about whether or not it is illegal or not. While the legal system work out whether or not it is legal for them to do so or not, because no one is worried about this reality.

This is a huge potential market and is relatively untapped, and as the years go by it’s likely that India will continue to capture bigger and bigger slice of the online poker pie as they move up the rankings.

Alongside the above-expressed act, Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) 1999 controls exchanges. Nonetheless, it manages universal exchanges. Accordingly, if an individual is attempting to make a worldwide exchange, other than in Indian cash, it needs to agree to FEMA controls. In this way, web based betting despite the fact that is not explicitly denied is managed by different specialists.

T Kalaiselvan
Advocate, Vellore
84896 Answers
2191 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

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