How Regulations on Online Gaming May Change in Coming Times
The Logical Indian Crew

How Regulations on Online Gaming May Change in Coming Times

India's Online Games Industry Is At A Turning Point, With Potential Changes In Regulations That Could Reshape How Online Rummy Game Platforms And Others Are Played And Managed.

India's online games industry is at a turning point, with potential changes in regulations that could reshape how online rummy game platforms and others are played and managed. As the government and industry leaders discuss new rules, players and businesses want to understand the implications. This article explores these possible changes, government initiatives, industry reactions, and what it means for everyone involved.

Current Market Size and Growth

The Indian online gaming market is estimated at $2.5 billion, while globally, it is a staggering $159 billion. The government's identification of 114 illegal betting and gambling platforms operating in India underscores the need for stringent regulations.

Government Initiatives and Proposed Changes

In recent years, the Indian government has taken numerous steps to regulate the online games industry. One significant move was the introduction of central rules for online gaming by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) in April 2023. These rules aim to create a co-regulatory framework involving the government and Self-Regulatory Bodies (SRBs).
Critical aspects of these regulations include:
  • Defining permissible online games
  • Obligations for gaming operators and SRBs
  • Due diligence requirements for online gaming intermediaries
The rules also highlight the need for mandatory player verification and the requirement for gaming companies to have physical addresses in India. This ensures that only approved games can legally operate, promoting a safer and more regulated environment for players who enjoy rummy games and others.

The Impact of GST on the Industry

One of the most debated topics in the online games industry is the Goods and Services Tax (GST). As of October 1, 2023, GST on online gaming is calculated based on the full-face value of bets, not just the Gross Gaming Revenue (GGR). This change has significantly increased the tax burden on gaming companies.
For example, before the GST change, the industry's revenue grew by over 20% annually. However, with the new tax rate, companies have seen their revenue from online gaming rise from Rs 200 crore to Rs 1100 crore per month. Despite this growth, industry experts argue that the high tax rate could stifle smaller startups, leaving only the most prominent players in the market.
The online games industry had plans to propose a reduction in GST to the new government after the general elections of 2024. Taxing based on GGR instead of full-face value would allow the sector to grow sustainably and compete with offshore gaming companies not registered in India.

The Role of Self Regulatory Bodies

Self-Regulatory Bodies (SRBs) are crucial in the new regulatory framework. These bodies are responsible for verifying and approving online real-money games like the rummy game. Only games that meet specific criteria and standards can be declared permissible online real-money games.
SRBs ensure that:
  • Games do not involve wagering on outcomes.
  • Gaming companies comply with all regulatory requirements.
  • There is transparency in how games are conducted.
This self-regulatory approach aims to maintain high standards within the industry while allowing gaming companies some autonomy.

Industry Reactions and Concerns

Introducing new regulations and higher taxes has led to mixed reactions within the industry. While some welcome the move towards a more regulated environment, others are concerned about the financial impact, especially on smaller companies.
Gaming federations and industry experts have voiced their concerns about the sustainability of the current tax structure. They argue that high taxes could drive players towards illegal offshore platforms, which often evade taxes and operate without proper oversight.

Implications for Players and Businesses

For players, these changes could mean a safer and more transparent gaming environment. With strict verification processes and regulated platforms, players can enjoy games without worrying about fraud or unfair practices.
For businesses, especially smaller startups, the challenge lies in adapting to the new tax and regulatory environment. While larger companies might absorb the higher costs, smaller ones might need help, leading to a less competitive market.

Recent Developments and Future Outlook

Several recent developments highlight the ongoing changes in the industry:
  • In April 2023, a video shared by news agency ANI showed Prime Minister Narendra Modi interacting with gamers and trying out various games. This indicates the government's interest in understanding the industry's dynamics and players' perspectives.
  • The government has identified 114 illegal betting and gambling platforms operating in India. This crackdown on illegal activities aims to protect the interests of legitimate gaming companies and players.
Looking ahead, the industry is likely to see more changes as the government and industry stakeholders continue to negotiate and refine regulations. These changes will likely focus on balancing the need for regulation with the industry's growth and innovation potential.


The regulations on online gaming in India are set to undergo significant changes in the coming times. These changes, driven by government initiatives and industry reactions, aim to create a safer, more transparent environment for players and businesses alike. As the industry continues to grow, with skill based online card games and easy to download rummy app like RummyCulture, the focus on responsible practices and user protection will be paramount. While challenges remain, these changes also present opportunities for growth and a more secure gaming experience for everyone involved.
Contributors Suggest Correction
Writer : Eshaan Sanjay Patil
Editor : Saneesh Cherian
Creatives : Eshaan Sanjay Patil