By Namita Singh and Sneha Johari Last week, we reported about Congress MP Shashi Tharoor introducing a private member bill called ‘The Sports (Online Gaming and Prevention of Fraud) Bill, 2018’ in the winter session of Lok Sabha last month. Tharoor told MediaNama that this bill seeks to protect the integrity of sports by dealing with issues of sports fraud, while regulating the online market at the same time. He said, “Sports betting is a State subject, but online sports gaming comes under the jurisdiction of the Parliament. Therefore, my Bill deals with the twin issues of sports fraud as well as online sports gaming.” In his opinion, it is important to regulate online gaming in India because it is a booming sector, and regulating can help in increasing the revenue for the State and weed out the generation of black money. He cited the 276th Report of the Law Commission of India, which states that the present market is estimated to be worth $360 million, and expected to rise to $1 billion by 2021. Elaborating on the importance of the bill, Tharoor said, “There is no statute in India which expressly criminalizes sports fraud or manipulation of sporting events. This was highlighted by the Trial Court which delivered its judgment on the 2013 IPL matching fixing allegations: it pointed out the limitation in the law by stating that the allegations against the IPL players ‘pertains to betting and match-fixing, which does not fit in any penal statute.’” The Bill explained…
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