SROs for online gaming sector to be notified by September end: Rajeev Chandrasekhar

Published on:

Rajeev Chandrasekhar, the minister of state for electronics and IT, has revealed the expected time frame in which the self-regulatory organisations (SROs) will be set up. In his statement, Chandrasekhar said that the SROs, which will certify permissible and non-permissible applications, are expected to be established by the end of September.

“There is a slight backlog in a couple of things. After the notification, it took the applications about 2–3 months to come. The latest application was received 10-days ago,” he said as reported by The Financial Express.

The minister added that the government is also trying to ensure that the SROs are not dominated by the industry and instead have appropriate representation from other prescribed set of people including child protection and child rights experts, psychologists, educationists, among others.

As of now, the MeitY has received four proposals to form SROs from four different entities namely, the All India Gaming Federation (AIGF), the Esports Players Welfare Association (EPWA), the All India Gaming Regulator (AIGR) Foundation, and a combined one from E-Gaming Federation (EGF) and the Federation of Indian Fantasy Sports (FIFS).

The government will notify three SROs initially, but the number can be increased as per the requirements later on. The presence of professionals from various fields is prescribed so that decisions are taken keeping public welfare in mind. Along with the SROs, MeitY is also expected to notify the new framework for online gaming.

The new online gaming rules were notified on April 6. The MeitY gave the stakeholders three months’ time to come up with proposals to form SROs. However, the rules and SROs are yet to be implemented.

Meanwhile, in some quarters the idea of having the presence of industry players in SROs has raised some eyebrows. However, Chandrasekhar has reassured that the government will not let the industry take over SROs. In case of any issue, the government will get involved promptly.

The SROs will work within the framework defined by the new online gaming rules to ensure proper safeguard of children, resolve any dispute and minimise addiction and financial risks.