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The Hindu
The Hindu
Devesh K Pandey

117 complaints on online gaming for real money processed in one year

The Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI), a self-regulating body of the advertising industry, has processed 117 complaints related to online real money gaming from January 2021 to January 2022, according to the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (I&B).

Responding to a question from Rajya Sabha Member K.C. Ramamurthy on misleading advertisements by illegal offshore betting and gambling websites on Indian TV and Over The Top (OTT) channels, I&B Minister Anurag Singh Thakur on Thursday said ASCI examined such complaints in the context of contravention of its code or guidelines on online gaming for real money winnings.

He said in a written reply: “The Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Act, 1995, and rules made thereunder require that all advertisements telecast on private satellite TV channels to adhere to the Advertising Code, prescribed under the Act, which inter-alia provides that the advertisements have to conform to the laws of the country.”

The Ministry issues advisories from time to time to broadcasters for ensuring compliance with the advertising code. On December 4, 2020 it had asked private satellite TV channels to comply with the ASCI’s guidelines on advertisements related to online gaming to protect consumers and inform them about the financial risk and other factors involved in online gaming.

“Also, the Central Consumer Protection Authority (CCPA) has been established under the Consumer Protection Act, 2019, for protection and enforcement of consumer rights as a class. The CCPA can issue directions to the concerned trader or manufacture or endorser or advertiser or publisher, as the case may be, to discontinue the misleading advertisement or to modify the same,” the Minister said.

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