Exclusive: MoS Meity Rajeev Chandrasekhar to release draft online gaming policy for public consultation today

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Minister of State in the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MEITY) Rajeev Chandrasekhar will be releasing the draft rules concerning online gaming for public consultations today.

The government recently appointed MEITY as the nodal ministry for online gaming after esports was announced as part of multi-sports events and included in the ambit of the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports.

The draft policy is expected to be announced very soon from now as Chandrasekhar is holding an interaction with media persons at 3.45pm in New Delhi.

The draft is expected to pave the way to ensure no illegal content or services are undertaken and any type of risk to the players is minimised.

While previously the rules were only planned to be applied for skill-based games, after an objection from the Prime Minister’s office, the rules will be applied to both games of chance and games of skill equally.

It is very likely that the rules will also include Know Your Customer (KYC) norms which will be required by all the online gaming platforms to follow to prevent minors from accessing real money games and can also be used to set a limit for a person addicted to real money games.

FIFS applauded the government’s decision to include esports in multi-sports events and to appoint a nodal ministry as the online gaming sector is unregulated. States were using their own definitions for distinction between games of skill and games of chance which will hopefully be resolved under the new draft rules.

With the rise of online gaming during the pandemic, skill-based games like poker and rummy have made their way into some of the most played games, according to All India Gaming Federation (AIGF). The federation claims that the real money gaming business will grow up to $7 billion by FY26.