Home / Legalise Sports Betting and Cull Corrupt Practices says Minister of State for Finance
Anurag Thakur, Minister of State of Finance is of the opinion that sports betting should be made legal. Thakur is adamant that by legalising betting and including it in the economy, it will help to contain “unholy and corrupt” practices. The minister was referring to practices such as match fixing of course which have plagued even the most recent IPL tournament.
Not only will legalising cricket betting help with reducing these activities but it will also generate tax revenues. The remarks were made by the minister at an event hosted by ICICI Securities. Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister’s (EACPM) part-time member and mutual fund industry veteran Nilesh Shah had asked the question regarding legalising betting to which the minister had responding favourably to.
Thakur further added that Indians have a ‘natural instinct’ to gamble which is similar to other places like Las Vegas, Nepal and Macau.
“My suggestion will be to legalise betting and gambling activities, which are underground. They continue to exist in our society,” he said. Responding to the same, Thakur, who has also been closely involved with cricket administration, said countries like Australia and England have legalised betting. Thousands of crore of revenue comes to the exchequer through the activity and it gets spent on development of the sport or in other activities, he said.
“If we look at the problem of match-fixing, then the trends in betting can give us leads on whether something unholy is happening or not. Betting can become a potent tool to stop fixing,” he said.