India Takes Baby Steps Toward Regulated Online Sports Betting
Regulated online sports betting has made its way to India, only not quite in the way you might be imagining. The action in this new era of sports betting will take place in a dedicated lounge/bookmaker shop, not on a home PC.
It’s a strange situation, but the gambling industry has long been known for its creative use of workarounds.
The new home of Indian sports betting resides in a dedicated gaming zone in the city of Gangtok, which is the capital of the state of Sikkim. (Sikkim is sandwiched between the countries of Nepal and Bhutan in Northern India.
The whole operation is run by Golden Gaming International, an Indian gaming outfit that’s been running regulated keno and virtual horse racing in Sikkim since December, according to a report on CalvinAyre.com.
Golden Gaming International is building on that base by adding cricket, tennis and football to the mix. There is, however, one catch.
All of this “online” wagering is done in the confines of what most of the rest of the world would consider to be a standard bookmaker. Punters can come in off the street, place their wagers on betting terminals.
While the operation might not sound especially exciting to anyone who lives in a country that already offers regulated sports betting, but it’s a significant milestone in India. It’s also the first step towards the opening of a potentially massive new sports wagering market.
Indian lawmakers recently took some preliminary steps towards establishing regulating sports in the county, but they’re still a long ways from anything like a national strategy. Until then, punters will have to be satisfied with workarounds like the one Golden Gaming International has come up with.