Bipasha Basu promotes illegal online casino, claims to be only licensed site in India

Published on:

Bipasha Basu, the Bollywood veteran was seen promoting an illegal casino and betting website by name Ambanibook.

In a story posted on Instagram account of Bakchod Billi, the actress claimed Ambani Book as the only licensed betting and casino app in India and encouraged users to bet and play online casino games on the website. The Instagram account has 1.8 million followers.

Yesterday, we reported of 13 parliamentarians raising questions in Lok Sabha on the rampant illegal online casinos and advertising by celebrities.

Bipasha Basu in the promotional video also claimed that the site does not require any identity proof and can be played instantly by deposit of amounts without requirement of a PAN.

It is worth noting that all kinds of online games of chance are illegal in India including online casinos. States like Sikkim and Meghalaya have enacted specific laws regulating online games of chance. Remaining states including Goa which is known for its casinos does not have any law permitting online casinos.

The consumer protection guidelines issued last month makes the celebrities endorsing products or services responsible and liable to action for appearing in misleading promotions.

It remains to be seen if action is taken against Basu for advertising illegal offshore betting websites and encouraging or abetting money-laundering and tax evasion by illegal and unlicensed online betting platform Ambani Bet. The name also denotes a relation to illustrious Ambani family, thereby misleading targeted users.

This Ministry of Information and Broadcasting issued an advisory dated 13.06.2022 to print, electronic and digital media to refrain from publishing advertisements of online betting platforms which are misleading, and do not appear to be in conformity with the Consumer Protection Act 2019, Advertisement Code under the Cable Television Networks Regulation Act, 1995, and advertisement norms under the Norms of Journalistic Conduct laid down by the Press Council of India.