Games of skill are excluded from the definition and purview of "gambling" under applicable Indian laws. The game, therefore, does not constitute "gambling activity" under applicable Indian laws. There are two versions of the Game - the 'free to play' version and the 'pay to play' version. The 'free to play' version is open to all Indian citizens who are currently residing in India. The 'pay to play' version is open to all Indian citizens who are residents of India, with the exception of residents of the states of Assam, Odisha and Telangana.


The Central legislation governing gambling in India is the Public Gambling Act of 1867. This Act criminalises

The Constitution of India allows states to make laws on betting and gambling. In furtherance of these powers, various Indian states have enacted anti-gambling legislations. These anti-gambling legislations are mostly in consonance with the Public Gambling Act of 1867 (and include the exception in favour of "games of skill" described below). Where a state legislation on gambling exists, it prevails over the Public Gambling Act of 1867.


Section 12 of the Public Gambling Act, 1867, states that games of mere skill are exempt from the application of the Act. The Supreme Court of India, has interpreted the phrase "games of mere skill" to mean games where there is a predominance of skill. In the case of State of Andhra Pradesh V. K. Satyanarayana, AIR 1968 SC 825, the Supreme Court defined a 'game of mere skill' to mean a game "in which, although the element of chance necessarily cannot be entirely eliminated, success depends principally upon the superior knowledge, training, attention, experience and adroitness of the player." By application of this definition, it held that the game of "rummy" was a game of skill, and did not amount to gambling under the Public Gambling Act. The Court reasoned:"Rummy..... requires certain amount of skill because the fall of the cards has to be memorised and the building up of Rummy requires considerable skill in holding and discarding cards. We cannot, therefore, say that the game of Rummy is a game of entire chance. It is mainly and preponderantly a game of skill."

In this case, the Supreme Court also upheld the levy of a nominal service charge for provision of a physical space, cards, etc., to play a game of rummy. In the case of K.R. Lakshmanan V. State of Tamil Nadu, AIR 1996 SC 1153, the Supreme Court held that the betting on horse races was a game of skill. It rationalised that in a horse race the winner is not determined by chance alone,as the condition, speed and endurance of the horse and the skill and management of the rider are factors affecting the result of the race. The better has the opportunity to exercise his judgment and discretion in determining the horse on which to bet. - FANTASY SPORTS GAME IS A GAME OF SKILL :

Like rummy and betting on horse races, the Fantasy Sports Game is also a game of skill as success at the game requires knowledge (often gathered through systematic research), attention, experience and adroitness on the part of the users. Users are required to first assess the relative worth of each Player in light of the scoring criteria used by and make theoretical evaluation of the Players' prospective accumulated statistics over the course of the round at the time of drafting a fantasy squad. Here, the squad owner must study the rules and make evaluations of the player's strengths and weaknesses based on these rules. The user is in possession of a great deal of knowledge which he must apply to judge the likely performance of each of his Players in upcoming matches, and further the user is required to invest time and effort in analysing and tracking the performance of his Players and other eligible Players. For these reasons, the Fantasy Sports Game is a game of mere skill and does not amount to "gambling" under Indian laws.


With regard to Assam, Odisha, Telangana, Sikkim & Nagaland, the laws in these states are unclear as to whether games of skill may be played for a free. Therefore, currently, residents of Assam, Odisha, Telangana, Sikkim & Nagaland are not permitted to play participate in the paid formats of the Fantasy Football Game. Residents of Assam, Odisha, Telangana, Sikkim & Nagaland.