Sports betting is illegal in India but still flourishes due to illegal betting operators. The massive demand for sports betting in India has caused these unlicensed operators to flourish throughout India and cause a massive concern for the authorities.
Cricket is by far India’s most popular sport and the Indian Premier League (IPL) is the richest domestic T20 league in the world. The IPL has been tarnished in the past by match-fixing allegations involving both IPL franchise owners and IPL players.
Preity Zinta Calls For Legalized Betting
Preity Zinta was once a major Bollywood actress dominating the silver screen in India. She has since moved on from Bollywood but still stays in the media spotlight as she is the co-owner of the popular IPL franchise – the Kings XI Punjab.
Zinta believes that one way the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) can eliminate concerns over match fixing is to push for legalized sports betting throughout India. Zinta has a lot of influence and her comments will get the attention of senior officials in the BCCI and government.
In a statement, Zinta said “I think it would be important if the government legalises betting because it will be a good source of revenue and stuff and secondly, we can stop all this crap because how many people can you control.”
New Revenue – Less Scandals
Legalizing sports betting in India would give millions of Indians the opportunity to place legalized bets on a variety of sports. The respective state governments could impose a betting tax and earn an enormous amount of revenue from the sports betting industry and use the same for boosting their budgets.
This would also significantly reduce the presence and impact of illegal sports betting operators in the country and also reduce the opportunity for match fixing to take place in sports. The illegal sports betting market in India reportedly generates over $150 billion each year.
Zinta is not the only person pushing for legalized sports betting in India. Earlier this year, the Law Commission of India put forward a similar recommendation and called for amendments to be made to the gambling laws in the country.
The Commission made this decision after carrying out a detailed survey that covered the general public, experts in the industry and even students. The overall consensus of the survey results showed that Indians wanted a legalized sports betting market. As of now there has been no progress on any betting legislation but things could change in the coming year.