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No coercive action against Dream 11 promoters: HC to Karnataka police

The two promoters of the gaming app moved the court seeking to quash an FIR registered against them under Karnataka Police (Amendment) Act, which has imposed a ban on online gambling in the state through amendments to Karnataka Police Act, 1963.

By: Express News Service | Bengaluru |
Updated: October 29, 2021 1:06:40 am
The Karnataka High Court has posted the matter for further hearing on November 11. (File)

A bench of Karnataka High Court on Thursday asked the state police not to take any coercive action against the promoters of online gaming company Dream 11 in Bengaluru.

The two promoters of the gaming app moved the court seeking to quash an FIR registered against them under Karnataka Police (Amendment) Act, which has imposed a ban on online gambling in the state through amendments to Karnataka Police Act, 1963.

Meanwhile, with online gaming firms filing a series of petitions in the HC against the recent ban on online gambling in the state, the state government on Thursday told a separate bench of the HC that it will not take any “precipitating action” under the new law against the companies until the cases are decided.

The All India Gaming Federation and nine different gaming companies have moved the HC opposing clauses in the Bill, which aims to “curb [the] menace of gaming through the Internet, mobile apps”. The federation and the companies oppose inclusion of online games of skill in the category of online gambling.

On Thursday, lawyers representing the petitioners argued for an interim stay on the clauses related to games of skill in the amended law. A single-judge bench of the High Court, however, referred to an assurance provided by the state advocate-general that “no precipitating action will be taken” until the court takes a decision on the new amendments.

Advocates representing the gaming companies have argued that Supreme Court judgments and recent judgments by Madras and Kerala High Courts have established that games of skill will not come under the purview of gambling laws, as opposed to games of chance.

The Karnataka HC has posted the matter for further hearing on November 11.

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