Minister of State for Information Technology and Electronics, Rajeev Chandrasekhar recently said that the government will soon come up with rules to regulate online gaming intermediaries and start public consultation on the matter. Through these rules, the government will ensure that there are no illegal content and services while encouraging technology innovations.
The minister’s comments was followed by the appointment of the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) as the nodal ministry for regulating online gaming and intermediaries.
Lauding this move, All India Gaming Federation CEO Roland Landers, said, “As the oldest, largest, and most diverse industry body for online gaming, which had set up the first Self-Regulatory Organisation (SRO) for the sector in India, we welcome the release of the amendments to Intermediary Guidelines Rules, which will now specifically also cover gaming intermediaries. We are grateful to the Government for acknowledging the long-standing need of the gamers and the online gaming industry. We believe this is a great first step for comprehensive regulation for online gaming and will hopefully reduce the state-wise regulatory fragmentation that was a big challenge for the industry. These rules will go a long way in ensuring consumer interest while helping the industry grow responsibly and transparently. These rules will also be a start in curbing the menace of anti-national and illegal offshore gambling platforms.”
President Droupadi Murmu has signed a notification to amend Allocation of Business (AOB) Rules to place online gaming under the Ministry of Electronic and Information Technology (MeitY). The allocation of a nodal ministry for the sector has resolved a long-standing debate on considering gaming platforms as intermediaries or publishers. MeitY, the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, and the Ministry of Consumer Affairs were considered to be key contenders to govern the sector.
“We are especially grateful that the Government has heard the industry and provided light-touch regulation, which will help in innovation and will boost Create in India and Brand India. We look forward to continuing the work we have been undertaking at the All-India Skill Games Council (AIGSC), the oldest and largest self-regulatory body for online gaming. The Government has maintained a very open and transparent approach, and we look forward to engaging further during the consultation period. AIGF is duty bound to provide utmost support to the government in making this sector a cornerstone of $1 trillion Digital Indian economy,” Landers added.