India online sports betting laws
India, with a population of 1.37 billion, is one of the world’s most populous countries – and it's also a hotbed of sporting passion. Indian people love their cricket, and many other sports too. Sports betting in India is a huge deal and the market continues to grow at an astonishing rate of 20% per year.
The simple answer to this question is yes. Online sports betting in India is legal in most parts of the country.
However, the picture behind that is a little more nuanced. Online betting in India is treated as legal because it is not mentioned in Indian betting laws and, therefore, is not explicitly prohibited. What adds to the complexity of the situation is that gambling is seen as a state matter in India. Each of the 29 states has the authority to make laws that apply to gambling activity in that particular area.
The only central law that touches on the subject is the Public Gambling Act of 1867. By definition, this does not mention online betting; indeed, it only prohibits running or being in charge of a public gaming house.
The Information Technology Act of 2000 regulates cyber activities in India. It doesn’t, however, mention gambling or betting.
In the years since online betting has thrived across the world, only a few states have banned it. It is, as a result, widely considered legal in the rest of India. Consequently, several of the biggest names in international bookmaking have begun offering sports betting in India from offshore, confident they will not be prosecuted.
Partly because the legal picture is complicated, a large amount of illicit betting with unlicensed bookmakers takes place in India. Hundreds of millions of dollars change hands on every match in the IPL, for instance. With no central government department responsible for gambling, there is little formal regulation of the industry.
Similarly, there are no federal responsible gambling measures – although some of the best online betting sites in India do offer some self-regulating assistance as part of their general customer relationship management.
Online sports betting in India represents a huge opportunity for the brands that have managed to take a share of the market. With roughly 500 million mobile users in the area, the potential market for international operators who set up Indian online betting sites is enormous. And alongside competition for customers, should also come more choice for the bettor.
When sports betting in India, you are most likely to find odds expressed in a decimal format. This is different to the other two ways in which betting probabilities are displayed in other parts of the world.
The odds at online betting sites in India might say the Mumbai Indians are 3.0 to win the IPL. This means that for every $100 you stake, you will receive $300 if the Indians win the tournament.
In fractional odds, as used in the UK, this bet would be displayed as 2/1. You get $200 back for every £100 you put on the bet, as well as your stake returned, making the same total of $300.
The third type of odds are American odds. Here the Mumbai Indians would be shown at +200. You receive $200 for every $100 you stake, plus your initial investment is returned.
You do not have to wager $100 – you can bet any amount you like. Use our odds calculator to work out your returns on your bets.
Cricket is more than a sport in India, it’s a passion followed with fanatical devotion by hundreds of millions of fans. In every corner of the country people play and watch matches with an intensity seen in very few other parts of the world.
India’s national team is one of the world’s best and has won every international prize going. The IPL (Indian Premier League), the country’s domestic competition, has quickly established itself as the leading annual Twenty20 tournament and commands a global audience. The appetite for cricket is absolutely insatiable and the amount bet on every match in the IPL runs into tens of millions of dollars.
There has been horse racing in India for more than 200 years, with a well-established breeding and racing industry.
Nine tracks across the nation stage regular meetings, which are restricted to horses bred in India – though stallions are imported from all over the world. The most prominent races are the five 'Classics' which run parallel to the original British classic races: the Indian 1,000 and 2,000 Guineas in December; the Indian Oaks in January; the Indian Derby in February; and the Indian St. Leger in September. They are all run in Mumbai, apart from the St. Leger which is raced in Pune.
Racing is popular with devotees of online betting in India – and it is one sport on which gambling is definitely legal. A case brought to the nation’s Supreme Court ruled that betting on horse racing was a game of skill rather than chance and could, therefore, be allowed in the country.
Tennis is one of the most popular sports in India, even though it is played only in urban areas of the nation. The game was introduced to India by British officers during the days of the Raj in the late 19th century and was soon picked up by locals.
No Indian player has won a Grand Slam singles title, but they have had considerable success in doubles tournaments at the top level, including Leander Paes, who has eight Grand Slam titles, won across all four major tournaments.
Online betting sites in India carry numerous markets on tournaments around the world and they are highly popular with Indian bettors.
For many years (field) hockey was the national sport of India. It became extremely popular after the British introduced it to the country in the 1850s.
Hockey is still the sport at which India has won most Olympic gold medals. The men’s team have been Olympic champions eight times, winning most recently in 1980.
More recently India reached the final of the Champions Trophy in 2016 and 2018, highlighting the enduring popularity of the sport. That is reinforced by the fact that hockey remains a popular sport on online betting sites in India.
Football is enormously popular in India and has been for many years. Numerous local leagues were set up during the days of the British Empire and an appetite for the sport has endured.
The Indian Super League enjoys healthy attendances, as did the 2017 Under-17 World Cup, which was staged in India in front of enormous crowds. That has led to the possibility that India will bid one day to bring the FIFA World Cup to the country.
Soccer is a popular sport for online betting in India, both on domestic matches, games in the English Premier League, and elsewhere in Europe and the world.
Online betting sites in India are not illegal – unless you are in a state that has specifically forbidden it. In most parts of the country, betting is permitted, though a sportsbook is not allowed to be based in India. As a result, most operators are based offshore.
Many of the best online betting sites in India have developed excellent apps. Look for a reputable sportsbook that offers a wide variety of markets and that has an app which makes it easy for you to find the bet you want and to place your wager.
People in states where betting is allowed have a great range of Indian online betting sites to choose from. It is advisable to bet only with a respected and trusted sportsbook that offers a broad range of markets and that also provides special promotions and bonuses for new and existing customers.
Yes, though there are certain states where betting is not allowed. Leading sportsbooks who offer sports betting in India have developed apps that make it easy and quick for you to find the market you want on your mobile and to place your bet on it.
Yes. The competition for new customers is intense among the best online betting sites in India. One way they try to attract new customers is by offering a welcome bonus. This can be in the form of a free bet, or it may be a particular sum that is added to your account.
The choice available for people who want to enjoy sports betting in India is extensive. As well as the leading sports such as cricket, soccer, hockey and tennis, you will be able to wager on many other events taking place all over the world.