Tamil Nadu Approves Ordinance to Ban Online Gambling

The Tamil Nadu Cabinet has approved an ordinance to ban online gambling in the State. The draft ordinance had been prepared based on a School Education Department survey on the impact of online gaming on school students and the inputs received from parents, think-tanks, psychologists, social activists and online gaming service providers on the proposed legislation. 

The ordinance would most likely ‘ban’ online gambling but not online gaming, which will be ‘regulated’ instead since a blanket ban is not legally tenable. The Government may consider placing restrictions on age and time spent playing the games to counter addiction. 

Earlier, the Tamil Nadu government had moved the Supreme Court against the Madras High Court’s order that struck down the Tamil Nadu Gaming and Police Laws (Amendment) Act of 2021 that banned playing games such as rummy and poker on cyberspace with stakes.

However, the HC had said that there was nothing to prevent the State from enacting a new law to regulate these games. As a result, a committee led by retired Judge K Chandru was formed in June to advise the Government on adopting an ordinance prohibiting online gaming.