One day after Madras High Court reversed a recent amendment to the Tamil Nadu Gaming Act, passed in 1930, which imposed a ban on online gambling with stakes like rummy and poker, Tamil Nadu Justice Minister S Ragupathy said new legislation would be passed to ban gambling in the ‘State.
In a statement, Ragupathy said: “Following the request of DMK Chairman and Chief Minister MK Stalin, the then-ruling AIADMK government urgently enacted an amendment to the law on November 21, 2020 to ban gambling. online rummy”.
He added: “Although the government expressed its views on the online gambling ban, the High Court said that the government did not sufficiently specify the reasons when enacting the law and without formalizing the rules, online games cannot be prohibited. ”
Ragupathy said that since public welfare is important, as soon as the order was passed by the court, Stalin asked to clearly frame the rules, guidelines and reasons required. “A new law banning games like online rummy will soon be passed,” Raghupathy said.
On Tuesday, the First Bench of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice Senthilkumar Ramamoorthy struck down the amendment and cleared a batch of PILs from Junglee Games India Private Limited and others.
“By imposing a comprehensive and far-reaching ban, the least intrusive test was violated and the ban thus fell in violation of Article 19 (1) (g) of the Constitution (right to practice any profession or to carry on any occupation, trade or business),” the bench said.
He added: “The contested legislation must be seen as something capricious and irrational. It was excessive and disproportionate… This court therefore strikes down the amendment in its entirety as ultra vires the Constitution.
The bench, however, granted the freedom to the state to pass other legislation without any loopholes. He added, “…nothing in this judgment would prevent the state government from introducing appropriate legislation confronting the constitutional principles of ownership.”
— with PTI inputs