Gambling is an activity that goes as far back as beyond written history. In simplest terms gambling if the application of money or anything of significant value (a.k.a stakes) on an event, which has some sort of uncertainty, associated with the expected outcome. The primary reason for applying the stake in simple terms making the bet is the intent to win a higher amount of money or something of material value. Gambling is a common activity in sports such as card games, lotto games, horse racing, football, and even in cricket. Sometimes this is applicable for a short-term event or an outcome such as a player scoring a certain amount of runs or even long-term as in betting on the outcome of a match or even an entire series. Gambling involves three main elements namely; the consideration of options, the chance all the probability/ uncertainty involved, and the expected outcome or the prize.
Gambling is referred to in different terms such as betting, gaming etc. Gambling may occur in casinos, carnivals, events, elections, share markets, foreign exchange, and securities derivatives etc. In some countries and economies gambling is legalized. Gambling is a major International commercial activity, with the legal gambling market estimated at over 600 billion US dollars. Gambling houses are widespread in countries such as the United States of America, China, Japan, and Italy.
Betting on cricket matches happens in great magnitude around the world. It happens both in a legal manner as well as in illegal ways. Regulations at local, national as well as international level exist either to ban or to heavily control gambling in order to ensure that illegal betting is minimized as much as possible. These regulations include licensing the vendors, applying taxation, applying age limits for gambling, applying a maximum number of transaction per period, and application of laws around gambling, and even completely banning gambling to name a few. Some governments recently introduced a recommendation on legalizing gambling through stringent control of the operation and by making it an entirely cashless transaction with the mandatory application of a Permanent Account Number (PAN).
Illegal gambling mainly results in an increase in money laundering. Black money generation and circulation increases with illegal gambling that ultimately results in a lucrative avenue for criminal elements. Money often ends up flowing between gambling, terror, drugs and underworld activities. Legalizing betting thus will create a positive impact on society as a whole.
Legalized gambling can happen in varying magnitudes. It can either result in ‘Proper gambling’ with high stakes or result in ‘small gambling’. Individuals with differing income levels can benefit from this classification. For example, only the individuals from high-income groups will indulge in ‘proper gambling’. Legalized gambling through proper legislation around identification of people placing bets, managed and transparent flow of transaction money will actually result in increased revenue for the government. For example Income Tax, Goods & Services Taxes and other legislative controls will generate additional income for the government which can be used for social welfare, development of infrastructure and overall for the betterment of countries.
Countries must thus be encouraged to legalize gambling. This can be achieved through the proper legislature, and by giving an opportunity for only licensed operators to operate such legal betting centres or sites. Upper and lower limits can be enforced so that proper control and tracking of transactions can be done which will also benefit in terms of depositing and managing winnings or losses.
So, we at Premium Cricket strongly believe that gambling or betting should be legalized and we agree with the law commissions recommendation in India. This will allow for proper control, reduction or control of crimes and an opportunity for providing a better social welfare for citizens of a country. Some food for thought for governments and relevant authorities!