According to an amendment bill introduced in the Tamil Nadu Assembly on Thursday, now online games such as rummy and poker involving betting shall invite imprisonment up to a period of two years or a fine of up to ₹10,000, or both. The Bill seeks to replace an ordinance banning cyberspace gambling.
The Bill stated that no person shall ''wager'' or ''bet'' in games like rummy or similar games played online using ''computers'' or ''any communication device'' or "any other instrument of gaming".
Also, no one shall facilitate or organise such games involving gambling in the cyberspace, reported NDTV.
The Bill also covers ''games of mere skill'' as well which are played taking into consideration a "wager, bet, money or other stake."
In case of any offence committed by a company, every person in charge and responsible for the conduct of the business or even any firm involved in conducting the offence, shall be deemed guilty. Further, all those involved in the offence shall be liable to be proceeded against and punished.
'Gaming' does not necessarily include lottery, but it involves any game related to wagering or betting in person or in cyberspace.
The Statement of Objects and Reasons for the Bill mentioned that playing games by using computers or mobile phones for money or other stakes are addictive in nature and it has developed manifold in recent times.
It further explained that due to this nature, innocent people got cheated and incidents of suicide were reported.
Further, it said that to prevent such incidents of suicide and protect innocent people from the evils of online gaming, it was decided to ban wagering or betting in cyberspace by amending the relevant enactments.
Last year in November, an ordinance was implemented. However, the present Bill seeks to replace the ordinance with certain modifications.
The Bill seeks appropriate amendments to the Tamil Nadu Gaming Act, 1930, The Chennai City Police Act, 1888 and the Tamil Nadu District Police Act, 1859, in order to ban online gambling and provide punishment which includes imprisonment, fine, or both.