Online Sports Betting



Why in news?

Ministry of Sports is undertaking consultations to legalise online sports betting in India.

What is Sport betting?

  • A sport betting is the activity of predicting sports results and placing a wager on the outcome.
  • The sports department is preparing an MoU with the UK which exhibits one of the successful models of legalised gambling.

How it is done in India?

  • The illegal betting market in India is worth around 10 lakh crore.
  • Most of it is done via local bookmakers and unregulated offshore websites.
  • Sports ministry is now trying to absorb this revenue by legalising online betting.

What is the rationale behind the move?

  • At present, betting is legal only on horse racing, and it is taxed.
  • Legalising other online sports betting can address the issue of poor funding for sports at central and state level.
  • Possibility of diverting a part of the revenue generated from betting towards the ministry’s programmes.
  • The issue of legalising betting gathered momentum when former Chief Justice of India R M Lodha recommended it in his report to the Supreme Court last year, saying that betting should be legalised in cricket

What are the challenges?

  • Betting is seen as a sensitive socio-political issue especially after the recent match-fixing and spot-fixing controversies in Cricket.
  • The challenge lies in balancing the economic benefits and ethical concerns with betting.

Source: The Indian Express





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