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Report No. 276

C. Reference to the Commission

1.6 In July 2017, the Supreme Court, while considering the Lodha Committee Report, in Board of Cricket Control in India v. Cricket Association of Bihar & Ors.4, made a reference to the Law Commission to examine the issue of legalising betting in India, observing:

the recommendation made by the Committee that betting should be legalised by law, involves the enactment of a Law which is a matter that may be examined by the Law Commission and the Government for such action as it may consider necessary.

1.7 The Oxford dictionary defines the term 'betting' as "the action of gambling money on the outcome of a race, game, or other unpredictable event". In other words, betting is a more sophisticated 'word-substitute' coined for the activity of gambling, since gambling per se carries with it a social stigma, which is known to bring along other social and moral vices. Nonetheless, understanding the intertwining connection of betting with gambling, the Commission decided to also consider gambling in the ambit of its study for this report.

Though the issue of legalizing gambling was not referred to the Commission by the Supreme Court, the Commission decided to study it, because, in the opinion of the Commission, betting and gambling are two sides of the same coin. Therefore, given the interconnectedness of betting and gambling, in the present report, various aspects of legalising both betting and gambling are considered.

1.8 On 30 May 2017, the Commission issued a public appeal eliciting the views and suggestions from all stakeholders, and placed it on the website of the Commission (A copy of the Appeal is appended to the Annexure). While doing so, the Commission explained the need for considering gambling along with betting. The relevant part of the Appeal is reproduced below:

While considering the issue, the Commission discerned that gambling is also a subject which is very closely associated with betting. While considering legalisation of betting, leaving aside gambling may render the whole exercise futile. Therefore, the Commission would like to study the issue of legalising betting as well as gambling in the country.



Legal Framework - Gambling and Sports betting including Cricket in India Back




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