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Betting should be legalised to curb illegal activities: Gaurang Kanth


Updated: June 7, 2013, 6:06 PM IST
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Betting should be legalised to curb illegal activities: Gaurang Kanth
Is there an urgent need to review the Gambling Act?

In view of the developments in the IPL spot-fixing and betting probe, should the Gambling Act be reviewed so that some of the ambiguities are removed? Sports lawyer Gaurang Kanth joined IBNLive readers for an interaction on the issue.

Q. India is nation of laws, poorly drafted randomly enforced agree? Gambling is the birth right of politicians, Bollywood actors, and captain of indian industries, and hence the new law if any should be applicable only to the fans, isn't it? Asked by: kochappan

A. No, I don't agree with the fact that the new law should be applicable only to the fans. A new law should be applicable to the citizens of India. As per the present scenario, there is a requirement for drastic change in the gambling laws.

Q. That the act is more than 140 years old, is reason enough to review its contents. Don't these acts get time barred, or are there no sunset clauses in these Acts. The objective of an act passed in 19th century would not be relevant now. Your take please? Asked by: Narayan

A. The Act once becomes a law cannot get time barred. I Agree that the act is more than 140 years old, however in view of the changed circumstances, there is a need to review and incorporate new provisions to meet the new challenges by way of amendment in the act. The objective of the Act is very much relevant now, subject to certain changes to curb the menace of illegal gambling and betting.

Q. Sir, what are the ambiguous points in this Act which need urgent revision according to you? Asked by: Ishwari Prasad Gupta

A. According to me, One of the basic flaw in the Act is that the same does not provide the definition of "gaming" which infact is provided in the Madras City Police Act, 1888. The offence under the Public Gambling Act, 1867 is a bailable offence which means anyone who is charged under the said act will get bail. In my view, the same should be non bailable. The punishment provided under the act is very lenient, however for commiting such offences, strict punishment should be imposed as provided under the offence of Cheating under Section 420 IPC.

Q. Why cant betting & gambling both be legalized. It will not only generate huge revenues but also snuff out illegal business just as gold smuggling was snuffed out, Whats your opinion? Asked by: Joydeep Ghosh

A. Yes, I agree the same should be legalised in order to curb the illegal activities and the same would generate revenue for the government.

Q. Should the Gambling Act be reviewed? Asked by: gaurav

A. Yes. I have already answered the said question.

Q. In which countries betting is illegal and what is the punishment? Asked by: JJ

A. Almost in all the third world countries, betting is illegal. However with respect to punishment, the same varies as per their respective laws.

First Published: June 7, 2013, 6:06 PM IST
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