The Gujarat High Court was supposed to make a decision on 23rd of November regarding the legalization of poker in the state. However the HC has decided to defer the same for another week and poker players in Gujarat are hoping for a verdict that allows them to play the game they love legally.
Petition for High Court’s Intervention
The Surat based gaming company, AAA PVT. LTD approached the Gujarat HC for its intervention after the Surat Police Commissioner denied permission to allow poker games in pubs and hotels on the basis that poker was a game of chance and hence constituted gambling which is banned.
AAA PVT LTD has opposed the decision stating that poker is a game that requires high levels of skills and mental ability. They have also highlighted the fact that the honorable court of West Bengal and Karnataka has already legalized poker and hence it is high time Gujarat does the same. Their petition also make reference to the state issued by Surat Police’s that poker is a game of chance and pointed out that the police department does not have any proof to prove that poker is indeed a game of chance and must be categorized as gambling.
Gujarat HC Take
After so many months of arguments, debates and discussions between various counsels from the State Government and seven clubs, the Honorable Justice Rajesh H. Shukla of the Gujarat HC was supposed to deliver a verdict on whether or not poker is a game of skill. However, the court has not yet given any sort of judgment on the same and has reserved its order as of now. The court has stated the final verdict will be declared on 30th of November; although no reason has been stated by the honorable court for the deferral of the verdict.
The authorities have continued to crackdown on a number of poker and rummy clubs in the state on the basis that they are running illegal gambling activities. Some of the clubs that have been targeted recently include Rollers Training Institute of Cards, Isanpur Gymkhana and AAA Gaming.
AAA PVT LTD’s Reaction
Maulin Pandya, the legal representative for AAA PVT Ltd wants the court to grant his client provisional relief and enable them to proceed with their day to day operations at the earliest. Poker operators in the country and players will have to remain patient for another week and wait to see how the High Court rules in the matter.