Are Betting Apps Legal in India? (May 2024)

Are you looking for legal and safe betting apps in India? We will help guide you through the laws and ensure you only download and play on legal and secure apps for Indian players.

Written by Shivam Bhateja
Verified by BettingGuide team
Last updated 21/2/2024

Are Betting Apps Legal in India?

Whether or not betting apps are legal in India is a complex question, as there is no specific law that explicitly prohibits or allows them. The Public Gambling Act of 1867 prohibits all forms of gambling in India, but it does not specifically mention online gambling. This has led to a legal grey area, and many betting apps operate in India without any legal repercussions.

It also gets a bit more complicated due to the imprecise differentiation between "games of skills" and "games of chance." Indian rules prohibit gambling on games of chance, but they permit betting on games of skill. 

Deciding whether a game is in the skill or chance category can be difficult. According to the Supreme Court's decision, rummy cannot be categorized as a game of chance like brag and flush, two three-card games. That’s because rummy players must possess a particular degree of talent, especially in memorizing. 

Consequently, it is lawful to play any game that demands a certain skill level from the player. However, it is the ‘legislative uncertainty’ on the ground that state governments can ban gambling apps anytime they want. 

So, is it legal or not?

First things first, it is completely forbidden to gamble offline. Nonetheless, India does not have a complete prohibition on online gambling.

The majority of Indian states do not have laws that prohibit betting, so you’re safe if you use one of the foreign bookmakers we recommend. Legal ramifications need not worry you when you wager on cricket as long as the operators have legitimate licenses and are not situated in India. 

However, it is important to note that the Indian government has taken steps to crack down on online gambling in recent years. The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) issued blocking orders against over 200 betting apps and websites and continues to ban more apps.

In the meantime, it is up to individual states to decide whether or not to allow betting apps. Some states, such as Sikkim and Nagaland, have legalized online gambling, while others have banned it. It is important to check the laws in your state before using a betting app.

Overall, the legal status of betting apps in India is complex and uncertain. It is important to be aware of the risks involved before using a betting app and to only use betting apps from reputable operators.

Legal Betting Apps in India List (May 2024)

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Why Trust Betting Apps in India?

Don’t trust any domestic betting app in India, as the Indian government prohibits gambling or any activity in local or India-based betting apps.

However, you can always put your faith and trust in legal betting apps in India that come with offshore licenses, accept Indian currency, and have the seal of approval from our experts. Our recommended Indian betting apps are all run by offshore organizations with international licensing and top-notch security features (like SSL encryption) to ensure your safety.

Playing real money casino games or placing sports bets on such betting apps in India won’t result in legal repercussions, so you can trust them without any worries.

How To Identify Legal Betting Apps In India

‘Are online betting apps permitted in India?’ is a subject we have already addressed. However, whether these betting apps are safe is a relevant concern that frequently keeps players on edge. Most popular legal betting apps and websites go to great lengths to ensure customers are safe on their platforms. 

These bookies go above and beyond to ensure you have a thrilling and secure online betting experience, whether it's payment anonymity or data security. Knowing how to distinguish a legitimate betting site from a fraudulent one is preferable, though. So, to be sure you don't wind up with a dishonest or illegal betting app, here is a basic checklist:

  • The App Shouldn’t Be India-Based

    The gambling regulations in India prohibit the operation of betting apps from within the country. However, since offshore betting apps are legal, they're the best option for placing legal bets. Verify whether the apps have licenses from international gaming regulators such as the Malta Gaming Authority, Curacao e-gaming, E Gambling Montenegro, etc.

  • The App Must Accept Indian Rupees

    The Foreign Exchange Management Act prohibits the conversion of Indian currency into foreign currency without authorization. That is why the only apps for betting that are deemed legal in India are those that accept Indian Rupees.

    Other things to consider when identifying legal betting apps in India are:

    • Verify whether popular payment options particular to India, such as UPI, PhonePe, VISA, and GPay, are available. 
    • Verify the presence of strong security mechanisms, including at least 128-bit encryption and SSL certificates. 
    • Make sure the bookmaker app offers timely customer service. 
    • Look for the function that verifies your account. 
    • Check online reviews of betting sites as well as independent review sites such as ScamAdviser and Trustpilot.

How To Download Legal Betting Apps In India: A Guide For All iOS and Android Users

The Google Play Store and, occasionally, the App Store do not directly offer betting apps. While several nations have licensed online betting apps available in the App Store and the Google Play Store, India does not yet have regulations for these apps. 

According to certain updates, Google India is streamlining its rules concerning the licensing of betting apps in the country. However, as of right now, downloading betting applications is only permitted and safest through the bookmakers' official websites or legitimate sources like us. 

Use the instructions below to download legal betting applications: 

  • Go to the website of the bookmaker. 
  • Enter your information and make the initial deposit. 
  • Locate the icon for the betting app on iOS or Android, then click to download. 
  • Launch the betting app to begin placing bets.

How To Know Which Betting Apps Are Not Legal In India

Indian players can wager on lawful online betting apps in India. However, they must ensure the betting applications you use accept Indian rupees and are from bookmakers outside of India. For instance, the Parimatch app is available outside India and takes Indian rupees as payment. 

Select the correct betting app, as not all of them are authorized. There's a good probability that you'll become a victim of one of the many fraudulent betting applications that prey on unsuspecting Indian players and lack regulation or licensing.

These betting applications may offer the greatest profits and user pleasure, but they can also land you in dangerous legal circumstances. There isn't a single betting app established in India that accepts players from that country. 

Betting Apps Owned By Offshore Companies With Global Licensing Are LEGAL In India!

Some of the internationally renowned gaming authorities, such as the Malta Gaming Authority, e-Gaming Curacao, and the United Kingdom Gambling Commission, among others, have licensed and verified the legal betting apps. 

Always verify the app's legitimacy by visiting the page's footer or 'About' section. For instance, the Parimatch app is a trustworthy and lawful betting software for Indian users licensed by the Curacao Gaming Authority.

Apart from this, the licensing authorities of the betting applications state that they adhere to stringent data privacy policies and encrypt data using powerful algorithms, such as 12-bit encryption techniques. Be cautious and use safe and regulated betting apps in India.

The Online Gambling Laws in India

Central Government Laws

In India, the Public Gambling Act of 1867 is the sole piece of central legislation about gambling. It does not, however, explicitly proclaim online betting legal in India because it was created long before online casinos and fantasy sports betting apps were even a thing. Nor does it consider it unlawful.

State Government Laws

The Constitution's 7th Schedule declares gambling and betting to be state subjects, giving states the authority to create their laws to control gaming inside their borders. As a result, several governments have created legislation governing online betting in recent years. 

These are some important findings:

  • In Goa, Daman, and Sikkim, offline casinos are permissible. In all other places, it is prohibited. 
  • Sikkim and Meghalaya allow online domestic casinos as long as they are licensed. 
  • In all other regions of the nation, online-based domestic casinos are prohibited. 
  • Except for Tamil Nadu and Telangana, offshore casinos and online betting sites are legal everywhere. 

Guidelines From The Reserve Bank of India

The Reserve Bank of India created FDI laws to control the flow of funds from Indian businesses involved in betting, lotteries, and gambling to handle internet betting within the country. However, offshore betting websites are typically exempt from these laws.

As a result, there should be no legal repercussions for playing games of chance on reputable online betting applications and websites, which implies that well-known online gambling sites like Parimatch, Bettlit, and 10CRIC are acceptable in India. 

In summary, similar to central regulations, there isn't a specific RBI policy declaring that internet betting isn't permitted in India.

Game of Skill is Legal In India & Game of Chance Is Not: Learn Why!

Games of skill and games of chance are the two main factors taken into account for legal considerations in the online betting markets. Let's examine them in more detail. 

Games of Skill In India

India is gradually accepting and moving toward legalizing games of skill betting. But what exactly are games of skills? These are games where prior knowledge or skill in the game is necessary to improve your chances of winning.

One of the best examples of games of skill that India is considering is horse racing betting. In horse race betting, your chances of winning decrease if you are an amateur with very little experience, while an experienced player can patiently and strategically analyze the game conditions and plan his wager to win.

Interestingly, the well-known Indian game "Andar Bahar" is a game of skill rather than chance because you have a 50/50 winning probability. 

Games of Chance In India

Except for a few states like Sikkim, Goa, and Daman, games of chance are illegal throughout India. A decent way to comprehend the game of chance is to believe in your luck. To play a game of chance is simply placing a wager over which you have no control.

The best illustrations of games of chance are seen in casino slots with real money. Players of games like roulette or slot machines must be skilful and only be able to make bets. The player's luck is the only factor that determines whether they win the wager. The majority of Indian governments forbid physical gambling establishments of this type because they view games of chance as unlawful.

However, Indian gamblers have a legal alternative in online casinos. Games of chance include the lottery, roulette, and dice games. Although there’s no offline or physical location to enjoy these games of chance, online betting apps run by offshore operators do have these games available for Indian casino enthusiasts!

Indian States Where Gambling Is Legal And Illegal

Indian courts have not yet determined whether a foreign betting website qualifies as a "common gaming house," even though gambling and betting are facilitated in numerous states by licensed businesses known as common gaming houses.

A handful of states have updated their real money gaming and gambling legislation to specifically cover websites and apps.

  • On December 2, 2017, Telangana published a notice in the Telangana Gazette amending the Gaming Act to include Internet in the definition of gaming establishments;
  • The 1974 statute was revised by Andhra Pradesh last year, subjecting gamblers to criminal prosecution; both states inherited it;
  • A law prohibiting online gambling, rummy, and poker was passed by Tamil Nadu in 2020, with few exceptions for skill-based games;
  • While amending its laws to handle online real money gambling venues, Nagaland launched a licensing system for online skill games; 
  • The State supports real-money gaming. Similar to Nagaland, Sikkim has been updating its gaming laws since 2008 to control stakes-based gaming and to allow real-money gaming; 
  • Meghalaya enacted an ordinance in March 2021 to control and generate income from real money gambling.

The issue with regulating foreign betting sites is that state governments oversee gambling, while the federal government regulates the Internet as a whole. So, a single State can't restrict a problematic website or app inside its boundaries. 

For instance, Andhra Pradesh attempted to request aid in preventing access to real money gaming websites that the State had just outlawed through the Hon. Chief Minister, YS Jagan Mohan Reddy. Though it has since been emphasized that the Center lacks the statutory authority to take action against what is effectively a State concern, these websites have remained accessible.

Are Online Betting Apps Liable To Pay Taxes In India?

A long-pending issue was addressed during the 50th GST Council meeting in July 2023, when a tax structure for Indian internet gambling, casinos, and horse racing was recommended.

The Group of Ministers (GoM) report on this subject was reviewed by the GST Council, which then made important suggestions about how these activities should be taxed. Consequently, it was agreed that horse racing, casinos, and online gaming would all now be subject to a single 28% GST rate. 

Future of Online Betting Apps In India

Given the heightened regulatory scrutiny, online betting apps in India are bound to revolutionize and change in the future.

Despite the industry's growth, the Indian government has taken steps to outlaw deceptive advertising tactics because it is worried about certain betting sites. The necessity of a self-regulatory body (SRB) certification in India's online gambling business is highlighted by recent revisions made in April 2023.

Some states, including Telangana and Tamil Nadu, have already decided to join the minority of governments in India that view online betting as lawful. We think that these two states are the exceptions, and it's unlikely that India will see a national online gambling ban very soon.

What is apparent, though, is that the Indian online betting market, which has, up until now, operated mostly autonomously, is placing a greater emphasis on establishing more structure and responsible betting procedures. More protection and safety overall for gamblers.

In a nutshell, there are differences in state laws regarding the legality of online betting apps in India, making it a complicated matter. While some states have welcomed online gambling, others have more stringent laws. Given this, it's essential to comprehend the legal system and select a platform that complies with the legislation.

The following factors should be prioritized when choosing a legal betting app: security, user-friendliness, licensing, and payment methods. These elements can support you in ensuring a fun and safe betting experience. Remember to set limits and gamble sensibly. Have fun, and good luck as you play!


I am an avid reader and passionate writer. I have been working in the content writing industry for the past 10 years now and I have written hundreds of content pieces that cover the world of gambling. With a passion for all things related to casinos, sports betting, and online gaming, I bring a unique perspective and in-depth knowledge to my pieces. From strategy guides to reviews and analysis, my goal is to provide readers with the information they need to make informed decisions and enhance their experience. Let's win big together!