November 6, 2023 3 min read


India Enforces Block against 22 Illegal Websites and Betting Apps

The country has taken action against websites and betting applications that were deemed illegal, arresting individuals who were allegedly involved

Countries across the globe continuously fight against illegal gambling. Such activities can include illegal retail slot machines, as well as sports wagering or illegal iGaming activities like slots, bingo, poker and others. While the popularity of iGaming continues to grow, the back market also flourishes.

India is one of the countries that constantly fights illegal gambling and has taken robust measures to prevent such criminal activities. Now, the country’s Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY), announced it has taken decisive action against nearly two dozen websites and betting applications that have been operating illegally. Overall, 22 illegal websites and applications were impacted by blocking orders issued by the Ministry.

The action comes after an investigation into the illegal offering conducted by the Enforcement Directorate (ED). The investigation probed an alleged illegal betting app syndicate. Consequently, it resulted in raids on Mahadev Book, an operator in Chhattisgarh. Allegedly ED’s massive investigation helped uncover that the app was operating illegally, local media news reports revealed recently.

Besides the raids against the illegal betting app and blocking orders, MeitY confirmed that two people, allegedly involved in the criminal activities, were arrested. One of the individuals, identified with initials A.D. was arrested along with another person with the initials B.S.Y. The duo is suspected of crimes under Section 19 of India’s Prevention of Money Laundering Act. Under the Act, money laundering is a punishable offense. It is yet to be confirmed whether or not the two individuals were indeed involved in the illegal activity and what penalty they may face.

No Action Was Taken, despite Investigations

In a statement released last week, Shri Rajeev Chandrasekhar, the minister of state for skill development and entrepreneurship, electronics and information technology, revealed that the local government in Chhattisgarh had the required authority to discontinue the operation of the alleged illegal websites and betting applications.

Chhattisgarh Government had all the power to recommend shutting down of website/app under Sec 69A IT Act. However, they did not do so and no such request is made by the State Government while they have been investigating it for last 1.5 years.

Shri Rajeev Chandrasekhar, minister of state for skill development and entrepreneurship, electronics and information technology

However, according to Chandrasekhar, a shutdown request for the illegal websites and apps was not made, despite an ongoing investigation for the last 1.5 years. He added that the first time action was taken happened upon a request from the ED. “Nothing prevented Chhattisgarh Government from making similar requests,” explained Chandrasekhar in conclusion.

The latest announcement comes at a time when the country recently implemented changes to its gambling sector, including an increase in gambling tax. That change saw the tax increase to 28%, applicable for activities such as horseracing, casino and online gambling. While previously, the tax was applied to the gaming revenue, now the total amount of money wagered is taxed.


Jerome is a welcome new addition to the Gambling News team, bringing years of journalistic experience within the iGaming sector. His interest in the industry begun after he graduated from college where he played in regular local poker tournaments which eventually lead to exposure towards the growing popularity of online poker and casino rooms. Jerome now puts all the knowledge he's accrued to fuel his passion for journalism, providing our team with the latest scoops online.

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