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Karnataka assembly passes three bills, govt tables bill to ban online gambling

The Karnataka assembly also passed the Identification of Prisoners (Karnataka Amendment) bill on Friday.

Another bill, ‘The Code of Criminal Procedure (Karnataka Amendment) Bill’, was passed by the assembly that allows recording of eyewitness accounts through audio-video-electronic means in the presence of the advocate of the person accused of the offence. (File)

Home minister Araga Jnanendra tabled the Karnataka Police (Amendment) bill, 2021 in the assembly on Friday seeking a ban on online gambling and betting across the state. The bill also provides for a maximum imprisonment of three years or a fine of up to Rs one lakh for the violators.

The bill states that “games means and includes online games, involving all forms of wagering or betting, including in the form of tokens valued in terms of the money paid before or after the issue of it, or electronic means and virtual currency, electronic transfer of funds in connection with any game of chance.”

The bill stipulates a fine of Rs 10,000 and imprisonment of six months for first-time offenders. For a second offence, violators would receive a jail term of one year and a fine of Rs 15,000.

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The Karnataka assembly also passed the Identification of Prisoners (Karnataka Amendment) bill on Friday. The bill seeks to include collection of blood, DNA, voice and iris scan samples under the “measurements” category for offenders for effective surveillance.

The bill, which amends the Central act of Identification of Prisoners with respect to its application in Karnataka, also empowers the superintendent of police or deputy commissioners of police, in addition to first-class judicial magistrates, to order collection of “measurements” from suspects.

A bill providing for the constitution of the Karnataka Prison Development Board was also passed during Friday’s proceedings. Titled ‘Karnataka Prison Development Board Bill’, it provides for initiating measures for skill improvement, welfare of prisoners and prison staff.

Another bill, ‘The Code of Criminal Procedure (Karnataka Amendment) Bill’, was passed by the assembly that allows recording of eyewitness accounts through audio-video-electronic means in the presence of the advocate of the person accused of the offence.

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