Is casino legal in India Gambling in India?
Is casino legal in India is one of the world’s most gambling-unfriendly countries. This is probably why we see so many questions about gambling here. Indians want to know if it’s legal to gamble here and the safest way to go about it online.
That’s why we decided to dedicate most of this page to answer some FAQs. You’ll find several gambling-related questions and answers below on the following topics.
- Gambling Laws and Rules
- Gambling Options and Compatibility
- Banking Options
- Bonuses and Deals
- Choosing the Best Gambling Site
We’ve also even included links to other resources when appropriate. Overall, the information below should clear a lot of things up for you.
However, if you have a question that we didn’t answer below, send us an email, and we’ll add it as soon as possible.
Gambling Laws and Rules in India
First, here are some answers to questions about India’s gambling laws.
Is casino legal in India
Yes and no. It depends on the state.
The Public Gambling Act of 1867 prohibits running or managing a gambling house. The consequences of breaking this law are 3 months in prison and/or ₹200.
This law does state that games of chance are okay. In 1957, horse racing was determined to be a game of skill. Then, in 1968, they said that Rummy is a game of skill. Other games, such as poker, are more or less a grey area, which is strange considering the games they do consider to be games of skill.
Then there’s the Information Technology Act 2000. This act prohibits anything that the country determines will corrupt people or is considered taboo.
Unfortunately, this includes gambling and comes with hefty consequences – ₹100,000 or imprisonment for up to 5 years for operators and ₹90,000 per day if you’re caught gambling online.
Currently only 3 states – Goa, Daman, and Sikkim – offer to gamble. There are 13 casinos between them. Sikkim planned to issue 3 online gambling licenses in 2010 but was unsuccessful. However, they do have an online lottery.
Is casino legal in India Has Anyone Been Arrested for Gambling in India?
We found a recent case where an illegal online bookie was arrested. Sonu Yogendra Jalan is considered to be the largest illegal cricket bookmaker.
Authorities scanned his computers and phones and found that he has ties to organized crime and more than 100 illegal bookies.
A couple of days later, actor Arbaaz Khan was summoned by police for his connection (placing huge bets) with the betting ring that Sonu Yogendra Jalan was running. The police believe that more of Bollywood’s personalities could be involved.
This is a fresh case, though. We’ll have to wait to see what happens.
These aren’t the only cases, either. We’ve seen several reports where sometimes dozens of people have been arrested for either running a betting operation or game or for participating in one.
If you don’t want to be arrested for gambling, your safest bet is to visit one of the legal casinos in the country. If you must play online, make sure you do so at a (UK) licensed gambling site and use an e-wallet to move your funds.
Is casino legal in India How Much Revenue Do the Casinos in India Make?
Goa has the most casinos (10). They contributed Rs. 135 crores to the state’s revenue in 2013. Converted to USD, this comes out to a whopping $19,818,000.
Is casino legal in India What Is the Legal Gambling Age?
The casinos in India are a stickler for ensuring that their patrons are over the legal gambling age. You can enter the casino if you’re 18 or older, but you cannot gamble yourself until you’re 21.
Do Indians Have to Pay Taxes on Their Winnings?
Experts (since we’re not lawyers or accountants in India) say that gambling winnings count as “casual income.” As such, you’ll have to pay a flat 30% tax on your winnings.
They also say that the casinos typically deduct this tax for you. You’ll want to make sure, though, as you’ll have to pay it to come tax time if they didn’t.
Is casino legal in India Is Social Gambling Legal?
Experts say that if there’s no betting or wagering, social gambling doesn’t fall under the Public Gambling Act 1867. This means that it’s not regulated.
However, if the game offers a prize, it may fall under the Prize Competition Act 1955. This law prohibits competitions where the prizes exceed ₹1,000 in a month or if the number of entries exceeds ₹2,000. If either stipulation is exceeded, then the person running the event must get a license.
Online Gambling Options in India
Now let’s answer some questions about the gambling options available to people living in India.
What Can I Gamble on in India?
You should have no issues playing or betting on whatever you want. That includes the following gambling options.
- Online poker
- Sports betting
- Casino games
- Online bingo
The challenge you’ll face is finding a site that offers all of these options under one roof. Bet365.com is one of the few options we can think of offhand that does.
You’re more likely to find a gambling site that offers sports betting and a casino, or sports betting, a casino, and online poker under one roof. Those are more common than a true all-in-one gambling site.
However, you can also find a site dedicated to a specific gambling option. For example, you can find a standalone sportsbook, casino, or poker room. We have pages on our site dedicated to those specific options.
What Casino Games Can I Play?
You should have no issues finding any casino game online. That includes the following options.
- Hundreds of slot machines such as video slots, classic slots, slots with bonuses, wilds, free spins, and more
- Dozens of table games and variants that include games like blackjack, roulette, Casino Hold’em, War, Baccarat, Pai Gow Poker, and Caribbean Stud
- Dozens of video poker titles that include Jacks or Better, 10s or Better, All American Poker, Deuces Wild, Jokers Wild, and more
- Dozens of live casino games. For example, you’ll find live blackjack, roulette, Casino Hold’em, baccarat, and more
- Dozens, if not hundreds, of scratch and arcade games
The challenge here is finding a casino with the specific games, variants, or stakes that you want to play. It also matters if you’re gunning for games from a specific software provider, as each casino works with a different set of developers.
We recommend you read our reviews before choosing a gambling site if there’s something specific you’re looking for.
Is casino legal in India What Poker Games Can I Play?
Game selection will vary the most for poker players, as game selection, variants, stakes, and so on are so different from one room to the next.
Take PokerStars, for example. They have the largest player base in the world. As such, you can find just about any game or variation you want to play there. That includes cash games and tournaments.
That includes popular games such as Texas Hold’em or Omaha and less-popular games such as Badugi or 5-Card Draw. You can play for pennies per hand up to thousands of dollars per hand and everything in between.
You’re not going to find that kind of selection at every/most sites. They simply don’t have the traffic to justify it.
This is where reading our reviews will come in handy. They will save you a ton of time, as we cover the games and stakes you can expect to find in each room.
That said, you should have no problem finding cash games and tournaments at most sites. Most rooms will offer guaranteed tournaments, knockout tournaments, SNGs, shootouts, and satellites, too. And most sites will have micro-stakes starting at $0.01/$0.02-$0.05/$0.10 per hand and less than $1 per tourney.
Do Indian Gambling Sites Offer Mobile Gambling?
Yes. You should have no issues finding a mobile-friendly gambling site. Most sites will either have native apps or a mobile-responsive site that you can access from your web browser. The latter is the more common option.
Most gambling sites are compatible with Apple and Android-powered devices. Blackberry and Windows devices are supported, too, though those options are hit or miss.
Our gambling site reviews tell you which sites offer which options and the devices they’re compatible with.
Do I Have to Download Software?
If it was 2010, you’d have to download software for just about everything you wanted to play. And that’s assuming that the gambling site even offered a Mac-friendly download, which many didn’t back then.
Nowadays, that’s no longer an issue. Most sites run HTML5 software or something similar. For you, this means that you don’t have to download software anymore. You can make bets and play games from your browser. Just make sure you’re using browsers such as Safari, Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, or Firefox, and you should be fine.
Poker rooms will be hit or miss, though. Many rooms will let you play from your browser. However, the catch is that you won’t have full access to all the room’s games and/or features that download users will have access to.
Banking Options for Gambling in India
We’ll now answer some questions about the banking options available to people living in India.
What Banking Options Can Indians Use to Gamble Online?
The safest option is to use an e-wallet, such as Skrill or Neteller. This goes for both deposits and cash-outs. E-wallets don’t use banks, so you’re less likely to deal with processing issues.
You can also use options such as credit/debit cards or bank wires. The issue with these banking options is that gambling is prohibited in most of India. You run the risk of having your payment declined.
Ask anyone who has been arrested for gambling. They’ll tell you that’s the best-case scenario.
Can I Bank in Indian Rupees?
Yes, most sites offer multiple currency options, one of which is the Indian rupee. You may also be able to place wagers in rupees, too.
We recommend you use rupees (or your native currency) whenever possible. That way you avoid dealing with exchange rates and paying fees, and you know exactly how much you’re betting.
Are There Limits to How Much I Can Deposit or Cash Out?
Most gambling sites will have a minimum and maximum deposit and cash-out limit. This varies a ton from site to site, though.
Most sites will have a minimum deposit limit of $10-$25 (converted to rupees). Maxes start at around $200 and can get well into the thousands of dollars. Some sites don’t have maximum deposit limits – you can deposit however much you want.
The minimum cash-out limits will vary from $10-$100. Maxes will start at around $200 and peak at around $1,000 to $5,000. Sometimes this will be per transaction, while other times it’s per day, week, or month. This is something you need to pay attention to if you plan to spend (and win) lots of money.
Many gambling sites will also increase your limits once you’ve verified your accounts. We recommend you do that as soon as possible so that limits won’t be an issue for you.
Is casino legal in India Do Gambling Sites Charge Fees?
It depends on where you join. Most sites do, though.
Few sites charge fees on deposits. We imagine that they don’t want to do anything that might discourage you from making a deposit or depositing as much as possible.
Most sites will charge fees on your withdrawals (if they charge anything at all). Fees vary a ton, but you can expect to pay as much as $70 for a bank wire and 2%-7% for credit/debit card transactions.
You’ll also want to keep in mind that you might have fees on your end, too. Your bank might charge you for incoming bank wires ($35+), and e-wallets tend to charge a couple of percent on incoming payments.
We can’t help you there, but you can read our reviews to find out what each site charges.
Will I Be Paid in Full If I Win a Progressive Jackpot?
Nearly every gambling site should pay progressive jackpots out in full. That’s because the jackpots aren’t paid out of their pocket – the software provider that made the game usually pays it.
Most legit gambling sites will pay jackpots in full after a holding period of 2-4 weeks. They hold your winnings for a while so that they can make sure the jackpot was won fair and square.
Other gambling sites will pay out progressives on a payment plan. The amount varies but can be something like $3,000 per month until paid to as much as 10% over 10 months.
As always, it depends on the site. Even though it’s unlikely that you’ll win a 6- or 7-figure jackpot, if you plan to play them, we recommend you join a site that pays them out in full.
You never know. You could win one.
Gambling Bonuses and Deals in India
Here are answers to questions about the gambling offers available to players in India.
What Kinds of Offers Can Indians Claim?
You should be able to claim just about any offer available to anyone else in the world. That includes offers such as these. HEADER GOES HERE
- Welcome bonuses
- Reload bonuses
- Free bets
- Free spins
- VIP programs
- Guaranteed poker tournaments
- Satellites to live poker events
- Reduced sports vigorish
The size of the welcome bonus can vary significantly from site to site. We’ve seen sportsbook welcome bonuses that range from RS. 2500 ($36 USD) to RS. 50,000 ($735 USD).
That’s a wide spectrum. But the point is that you should have no issues finding offers to claim.
What Are Playthrough Requirements?
These are terms that the gambling site has for each of its offers. They have these terms to prevent people from signing up, claiming their bonuses, and immediately cashing out.
A playthrough is the number of times you’re required to wager your bonus. For example, say there’s a 40x playthrough on the $1,000 bonus you claimed. This means that you’ll need to wager $40,000 ($1,000*40) before you can cash out.
If you cash out too soon, you risk having your winnings voided and/or the rest of your bonus funds confiscated.
Keep in mind that the playthrough can be multiplied by your bonus and deposit. For example, if you deposited $1,000 to get that $1,000 bonus, with a 40x playthrough, you’d need to wager $80,000 before you could cash out.
That’s pretty high but not as high as the playthrough for table game and video poker players. Whatever the default playthrough is (which applies to slot players), table and video poker players will need to wager 5x-20x that. This can come out to tens of thousands or even hundreds of thousands of dollars.
You’ll have to decide for yourself if those kinds of offers are worth pursuing or not.
How Do Free Bets Work?
Free bets are more like insurance than bets. Most sites don’t give you $10 or $20 to make a bet. Instead, they tell you that when you make a bet and it loses, they’ll reimburse you up to $25 or $50. If you win, you get nothing.
Free bets are usually for a specific game or sport. Most free bet offers will have a wagering requirement (on your winnings) that you’ll need to complete before you cash out.
How Do Free Spins Work?
It depends on the offer.
If the free spins are offered in addition to a welcome bonus, you’ll usually get 10-20 free spins per day until they run out. If you fail to use your spins within 24 hours, many casinos will take them away.
Sometimes you can use free spins for whatever machine you want (with a few exceptions). Other times, the free spins will be for a specific set of machines, sometimes from a specific software provider or for a new machine the casino added.
Playthrough requirements will vary, too. Some casinos let you have your winnings without having to play through them first. Other times, you’ll need to complete a playthrough (30x or higher) before you can cash out.
How Do Cash-Back Offers Work?
This depends on the product (sports, casino, poker, etc.), as well as the kind of offer.
Sportsbooks will often offer cash-back on your losses. For example, you might be able to claim an offer where you’ll receive 10% of your net losses each week up to so many dollars.
Casinos and poker rooms may do something similar. You’ll get a small percentage of your losses paid back to you every so often (daily or weekly). Sometimes these are for specific sports, markets, or games, while in other cases it’s available sitewide.
Another kind of cash-back offer is the points program. The gambling site will give you 1 point for every $1 or $10 or $100 you spend. Once you accumulate 100, 500, 1,000, or however many points, they’ll give you some cash-back. The minimum amount is usually $1 or $5.
Cash-back offers are a nice way to minimize your losses. It’s also a nice surprise when you get a little money deposited into your account after you thought you busted your bankroll.
Indian Online Gambling FAQs：
We think so. Licenses don’t guarantee your safety, but they force gambling sites to do paperwork and front a 5- or 6-figure fee. That’s going to weed a lot of bad people out.
Depending on where the license is from, you’ll have options for if you ever have a dispute with the gambling site that you can’t resolve on your own. Again, there are no guarantees that you’ll have your problems solved.
It’s better than having NO options, though, which is what a lot of gambling jurisdictions offer.
There are a few attributes we look for. In no particular order, these are some of the things we look for.
- That the gambling site is licensed and regulated
- That they have a positive reputation within the industry
- That they don’t have a history of rogue behavior
- That their terms aren’t predatory (unfair)
- That their games are tested regularly for randomness (which means they’re fair)
- That the site pays out their customers quickly and without issue
If a site checks all these boxes, they’re good to go.
There are other things you can look for, such as how long they’ve been in business, the size of their bonuses (usually, “bigger” equals a shoddy site), or you can look up their parent companies.
However, these factors don’t produce consistent results. Not like the items in the list above will.
There’s no way we can answer that. Not without knowing what you want to bet on or play. The best we can do as far as blind recommendations go is point you to our list of sites at the top of this page.
That said, we recommend you create a list of what you want from a gambling site. For example, you might answer the following questions.
- Do you want to bet sports?
- Do you want to play casino games? What kinds of games do you want to play – slots, table games, live casino games, etc.?
- Do you want to play poker?
- Do you want to play bingo?
- What banking options do you want to use?
- What limits do you want to play for?
- What kinds of offers or deals do you want to claim?
Rate your answers in order of importance. Then look for a site that has most of what you’re looking for.
Chances are you’re going to have to compromise somewhere. Maybe you find a site that has all the live dealer games you want, but their promotions suck. Maybe there’s a site that has great prices on their football markets, but their poker room has no traffic.
Just do your best. If you can find a site that has 75% of what you want or more, you’re doing well.
Customer support is important to us. Casinos are providing a service. If you have any questions or problems, especially after you’ve deposited money, you should be able to get help ASAP.
Gambling sites should offer email support (via email or contact form) at the very least. Everyone uses email nowadays, and not every issue requires phone or live chat support.
Email support should be quick. We expect responses in less than 24 hours and preferably within 3-6 hours. Many of the best gambling sites accomplish this, no problem, despite having hundreds or even thousands of customers.
We also like sites that offer live chat. It’s a great way to get help quickly without having to get on the phone with someone.
Gambling sites that offer phone support – which is rare – get a virtual high-five from us. Some of the most popular sites have thousands of customers. We can’t imagine the infrastructure a site like this needs in order to help people by phone.
We also like sites that provide in-depth FAQ sections – sort of like the one you’re reading now. These often cover dozens or even hundreds of commonly asked questions that gambling sites get daily. That includes questions about their banking options and fees and how their offers work.
We recommend you start with the site’s FAQ section whenever you have a question. It might just be the fastest way to get your question answered.