Categories: Fantasy Cricket
August 19, 2017
| On 1 year ago

Is playing Fantasy Cricket legal in India?

By Zeyb Zubairy

The rising popularity of Fantasy Cricket League –a game of skills

The entire world now knows that cricket is a religion in India. There is a tremendous craze for cricket in India. People play and follow it passionately like no other sports. Whether it is the one-day internationals, five-day test cricket or even the smallest version- T20-format, there is a distinct craze for cricket in India. And, the Fantasy Cricket League is no exception to this.

Fantasy Cricket has enormous potential in India. With the tremendous rise in internet penetration in India, hundreds of online games have been launched based on different concepts. Over the last decade, the online gaming industry in India has undergone an immense transformation. There are ample of growth opportunities for the online gaming industry in India and Fantasy Cricket is one such example.

Now if you are not aware then let me tell you, Fantasy cricket is a fun and interactive online multiplayer game where users select their own virtual team to fight the opponent. Similar to the real cricket game, Fantasy cricket games are available in all three formats- ODIs, Test and Twenty20 cricket. However, with the increasing popularity of this game, there’s also an increase in questions about its legality. There are many people who ask several questions such as- Is Fantasy Cricket legal in India? Is playing Fantasy Cricket 100% legal in India? Why is Fantasy Cricket legal in India?

So, let’s have a detailed discussion on this and then we will come to a suitable conclusion.

What is Fantasy Cricket League?

Fantasy Cricket is a multiplayer online cricket game where users make their own virtual team comprising of cricket players. The team’s success, which you make, depends on the performance of the players you choose in real matches. In the end, the team that manages to score the maximum score throughout the game tops the leaderboard and wins. Moreover, to enhance your gaming experience, you can also invite your friends to play and compete. There are plenty of daily competitions where you can win prizes in the form of cash and other goodies.

A number of new daily fantasy cricket websites are popping up regularly to cater sports fans. These sites receive massive traffic during popular tournaments like T20 World Cup, Asia Cup, IPL, Champions Trophy, etc. Most of these online gaming websites claim in their statements that the game of fantasy cricket is 100% legal in India.

Why is Fantasy Cricket Legal in India?

In India “a game of skill” is legal rather than “a game of chance”. Now, “games of skills” are all those games where the outcome of the game is predominantly determined by skills factors such as knowledge, expertise, judgments, strategy, etc. These games are usually not deemed to constitute “gambling” and are generally not restricted by laws prohibiting gambling. On the other hand, the “games of chance” are those games where luck predominantly determines the outcome of the game. In a game of chance, you have insufficient ability to influence the result of the game through your decision-making. Games of chance are usually deemed as gambling and prohibited under anti-gambling laws.

In addition to this, for a game to be categorised as a “game of skill” under the Indian law, the element of skill must be greater than the element of chance in determining the outcome of the game. In other words, the amount of skill involved in a game is the major factor responsible for deciding the legality of the game in India.

Game of Skills

Two legal cases, i.e. the State of Andhra Pradesh v. K Satyanarayana (AIR 1968 SC 825) and KR Lakshmanan v. State of Tamil Nadu (AIR 1996 SC 1153) in India have recognised the games of skills as legal. Games such as Chess, and Rummy, Wagering on Horse Racing are categorised as the ‘game of skills’ and are hence 100% legal to play in India as the element of skill in determining the outcome of the game is more than the element of the chance. A player who is more experienced has in-depth knowledge of the game and is good at decision making usually wins the game.

Two legal cases, i.e. the State of Andhra Pradesh v. K Satyanarayana (AIR 1968 SC 825) and KR Lakshmanan v. State of Tamil Nadu (AIR 1996 SC 1153) in India have recognised the games of skills as legal. Games such as Chess, and Rummy, Wagering on Horse Racing are categorised as the ‘game of skills’ and are hence 100% legal to play in India as the element of skill in determining the outcome of the game is more than the element of the chance. A player who is more experienced has in-depth knowledge of the game and is good at decision making usually wins the game.

In the case of Fantasy Cricket League, there are a plenty of skills required to be good at it. You need to pick the right combination of batsman and bowler depending upon the pitch report, weather conditions, the form of players, etc. Also, in Stars11 Fantasy cricket game, users are allocated a certain budget within which they have to create their team. The winning team is determined by a unique point scoring criteria. As a result, Fantasy Cricket falls under the category of legal games in India.

Assam, Odisha and Telangana- Exception

The law in these three states- Assam, Odisha and Telangana proclaims that any game of mixed chance and skill cannot be played for any real money. Therefore, it is recommended that if you are a resident of Assam, Odisha and Telangana then do not participate in any “Paid Fantasy Sports game” for real money. However, you are free to participate and play in “free to play Fantasy Sports game” to develop your skills and for fun.

Conclusion

Above all, in-depth thinking and pre-requisite knowledge about the game is the main factor responsible for the overall popularity of Fantasy Cricket in India. You need to apply all the permutation and combination to defeat your opponent.

In conclusion, it is a misconception that Fantasy Cricket is gambling or betting and is illegal in India. It is 100% legal to play Fantasy cricket in India. Fantasy Cricket League requires plenty of skills, knowledge about the games, decision making proficiency and several other aspects on the part of the user to win. It is due to this reason why Fantasy Cricket is legal in India. Lastly, the Supreme Court of India has also categorised “Fantasy Cricket League” as “a Game of Skill”.

So, what are you waiting for? There are plenty of websites that host Fantasy Cricket Games in India. Look for them and let the fever of cricket rise up even more!

Is playing Fantasy Cricket legal in India? was last modified: August 21st, 2017 by Zeyb Zubairy

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Zeyb Zubairy

An architect by profession. She's also a basketball enthusiast, a dreamer, loves science and poetry and has a penchant for writing!

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