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Rajasthan Government to Ban Online Gambling, Betting

Niji Narayan

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Rajasthan Government to Ban Online Gambling, Betting
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The Rajasthan state government is going to ban online gambling and betting.

The state government will bring a bill in the ongoing assembly session to make online gambling a cognisable offence and introduce strict penal provisions including a jail term and steep fines.

Considering online gambling and betting to be a social evil, the government has given its approval to amend the Rajasthan Public Gambling Ordinance 1949. The bill will be tabled in the house soon.

The Rajasthan Public Gambling (Prevention) Bill 2021 has strict provisions to stop online gambling and betting. Those who run gambling dens and those who gamble are also being brought within the ambit of the new law.

Asia

Kerala High Court Refuses to Stay Ban on Online Rummy

Niji Narayan

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Kerala High Court Refuses to Stay Ban on Online Rummy
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The High Court of Kerala has rejected a petition from online gaming companies to stay the ordinance that makes playing online rummy for stakes a punishable offence.

The state of Kerala is sticking to the online rummy ban introduced in February despite complaints from gaming companies who note that land-based play of rummy is not banned.

Online gaming companies also noted that rummy is a game of skill and the amendment of section 14A of the Kerala Gaming Act of 1960 only covered games of chance, not skill games.

According to local media, although the Kerala High Court stated that it does not agree with the complaint, it asked the Kerala Government to present a statement by May 29.

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Asia

China Continues Crackdown on Cross-border Gambling

Niji Narayan

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China Continues Crackdown on Cross-border Gambling
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China’s Public Security Ministry has outlined further plans to crack down on cross-border gambling crimes to “sustain the economic security and public stability of China.”

Last week, Chinese Public Security Minister Zhao Kezhi held a meeting themed “Combating Cross-border gambling” at which he underlined the importance of destroying cross-border gambling syndicates operating in China.

The goal is “to crack down on any illegal fundraising network for gambling in our territory, and to resolutely cut off the gambling-related capital chain, technology chain, promotion channel and gamblers flows,” he said.

The crackdown will see the Ministry of Public Security strengthen international cooperation with nearby countries to jointly combat cross-border crimes, while also expanding a “blacklist” of overseas tourist destinations it says are attracting Chinese tourists for gambling activities.

“We must strictly punish and prevent the soil of cross-border gambling, using the highest and heaviest penalties to achieve the strongest legal deterrence. We must create a strong atmosphere of rejecting gambling,” Zhao said.

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Asia

PhilWeb Reduces Net Loss to $1.2M

Niji Narayan

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PhilWeb Reduces Net Loss to $1.2M
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PhilWeb Corporation has reported a 30% decrease in its net loss to Php60 million (US$1.2 million) in 2020, despite suffering a 51% decline in revenue due to COVID-19 closures.

The company’s sites were all closed on 15 March 2020 as the COVID-19 pandemic hit the Philippines before gradually re-opening at reduced capacity from June, resulting in reduced revenues of Php105 million (US$2.2 million) and EBITDA of Php30 million (US$618,000).

However, PhilWeb President Brian Ng said that positive EBITDA has been printed since October and net income since November, with venues operating at around 60% capacity.

“Our fourth quarter 2020 results came before PhilWeb’s acquisition of 16 eBingo venues and 2 accredited eBingo machine providers, as well as the revenue contribution of additional eGames sites incrementally converting back to our Electronic Gaming System at the start of 2021,” Brian Ng said.

“The Company is on stable ground and well positioned as we anticipate the return to economic activity in the second half of the year.”

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