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ESSA welcomes report recommending Indian gambling reform

Sports betting integrity body the ESSA has welcomed a report that recommends licensing and regulating gambling in India.

The 145-page report, published by the Law Commission of India, concluded by saying that “there could always be an option to have a relook at the earlier approach of a complete ban”, due to the rise in online gambling making it far more difficult to monitor and curb betting activity.

ESSA Secretary General Khalid Ali released a statement in the aftermath of the report that read: “ESSA welcomes the Law Commission’s recommendation to licence and regulate sports betting in India. We strongly encourage Parliament and state legislatures to enact the broad premise of the Law Commission’s recommendations and in line with the detailed response ESSA provided to the consultation last year.

“As the Law Commission states, prohibition has been ineffective and has resulted in widespread unlicensed betting. The only way to address that and the significant integrity issues it brings is to enact a clear regulatory framework for betting. Such action will undoubtedly have sizable possible economic and integrity impacts.

ESSA is ready to work closely with Indian sports and authorities to ensure and maintain the integrity of sporting events within that new framework.”

The ESSA plays a key role as the regulated betting sector’s representative body at national and international match-fixing policy forums, and holds positions on working groups at the European Commission, Council of Europe and the International Olympic Committee (IOC).