Update on 16/09/2022: A two-Judge Bench of the Supreme Court comprising Justices Abdul Nazeer and V. Ramasubramanian issued notice in the Karnataka government's challenge to the Karnataka High Court's quashing of its online gaming ban in February 2022. The matter will be tagged with the Tamil Nadu government's pending challenge to the striking down of a similar ban by the Madras High Court and heard by a separate Bench. Original article published on 9/09/2022: The Supreme Court issued notice in the Tamil Nadu government's challenge to the Madras High Court's August 2021 verdict that struck down its online 'gaming' ban today. A two-Judge Bench comprising Justices Aniruddha Bose and Vikram Nath listed the matter for after ten weeks from now. The respondents—online gaming platform Junglee Games India Pvt. Ltd. & Anr—were granted four weeks to file a counter affidavit. Why it matters: Tamil Nadu has witnessed rising numbers of online gambling-related suicides over the last few years. There exists a regulatory vacuum both at the Central and State level when it comes to mitigating these harms—a gap that Tamil Nadu's ban perhaps aims to fill. However, the all-encompassing nature of these bans—notably enforced across South Indian states of late with limited success—raises questions on whether they are effective tools to regulate the sector with. With gambling-related suicides a raging political issue across party lines in Tamil Nadu, the erstwhile AIADMK government introduced the ban through the Tamil Nadu Gaming & Police Laws (Amendment) Act, 2021. The Act banned all forms of online gaming…
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