Jaydeep Chakravarty appointed as expert member of Meghalaya Gaming Commission

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The state government of Meghalaya has appointed online gaming and betting consultant Jaydeep Chakravarty as the expert member of the Meghalaya Gaming Commission. The panel is authorised to send out regulations to make sure that games are played fairly. It also acts as a body to resolve disputes between the gaming operators and players.

The state government had appointed Justice [Retd] Naveen Srivatsava as the Chairman of the Meghalaya Gaming Commission, in April last year, that was constituted under the new gaming regulation. He will be in charge of the role for three years, which can also be extended for another tenure of the same period or until he turns 65.

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The Meghalaya state cabinet, in March 2021, passed the Meghalaya Regulation of Gaming Act, which aims at regulating the online gaming. The government issued the Meghalaya Regulation of Gaming Rules later that year in December.

Several political parties and organisations, including the popular party, Meghalaya United Christian Forum (MUCF), raised their concerns, opposing the government’s decision to decriminalise online gambling and betting. But the government stated that only tourists and people visiting the state will be allowed to carry out online gambling and betting.

Moreover, the Meghalaya Chief Minister, Conrad Sangma, discounted the possibility of repealing the regulations of the state regarding the gaming act from 2021, saying that repealing it would lead to a revenue loss of around INR 10 crores on an annual basis. “If we repeal (the Act) then there will be nothing to regulate and we will only be losing close to Rs 8 crore to Rs 10 crore of revenue,” Sangma was quoted as saying by Economic Times.

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Meghalaya is now the third Indian state after Sikkim and Nagaland, to officially legalise online gaming. The idea behind the decision is to raise the collection of revenue of Meghalaya. The taxation department of the state has decided to make it mandatory to have a license for any person dealing with online gaming.