Online gaming industry in India has seen promising trends in India in the year 2015. Online gaming entrepreneurs are also very enthusiastic about the future of online gaming industry in India. At Perry4Law Organisation (P4LO) we have been helping various online gaming entrepreneurs in complying with techno legal requirements of Indian and other jurisdictions. These include techno legal compliances about online poker, online rummy, fantasy games, mobile games, Internet games, e-sports, card games, lotteries in India, etc.
However, a disturbing trend of "legal violations" is fast dominating the online gaming industry of India. For instance, the fine line and distinction between online gambling and online gaming in India is not appreciated and understood by online gambling and gaming enthusiastics of India. As a result they are frequently prosecuted in India for violating online gaming and online gambling laws of India. Even technical mechanisms are also used to curb such activities in restricted territories or zones. For instance, the Andhra Pradesh CID has requested the Cert-In to block Playwin/s website in AP on the ground of prohibition of online gambling in AP. In the past, Kerala refused permission to Future Gaming Solutions India Private Ltd to sell Nagaland lotteries in the state.
We have very specific and unique online poker laws and regulations in India. Whether by design or ignorance, online poker websites in India are violating these laws of India. Many online poker players in India also play the same in active violation of the laws of India in this regard. Most of them are not even aware whether playing online poker in India is legal or illegal. Further, taxability of online poker websites of India is another crucial issue that is frequently ignored by poker entrepreneurs. The laws and regulations for online gambling and online gaming in India must be religiously followed by all the stakeholders in their own interest.
Both online gaming and online gambling market of India is fast booming and maturing. Entrepreneurs in these fields have started exploring Indian markets to establish their ventures in India. Some of them have even established their businesses in neighbour countries like Nepal and Sri Lanka so that the moment Indian market is liberalised they can easily establish their venture in India. Amazon is also targeting home entertainment segment as it bought Videogame Studio Double Helix Games.
Mobile games have also become popular world over, including India. The market size for online games and mobile games is tremendous. There are very few players as on date in the mobile gaming industry of India. However, these players have to resolve many techno legal issues before they can establish their businesses in India. These include mobile payment compliances, payment gateway and POS terminal service due diligence, websites development compliances, Internet intermediary obligations, cyber law due diligence (PDF), etc. Presently many mobile application developers are violating Indian laws and may be prosecuted in the near future.
Perry4Law strongly recommends that online and mobile gaming entrepreneurs and businesses in India must ensure techno legal compliances before launching their respective ventures in India. Avoiding these techno legal compliances would prove counter productive in the long run.