Media Future of TV

Indian broadcast ministry bans online and print betting ads

By Taruka Srivastava | Freelance journalist

June 13, 2022 | 3 min read

The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (I&B ministry) has issued guidelines to print, electronic and digital media to refrain from publishing advertisements of online betting platform.

Gambling

Indian broadcast ministry bans online betting ads

The advisory also stated that any gaming advertisement must carry disclaimers like for eg. print/static ad should say that this game involves an element of financial risk and may be addictive and to play responsibly at one's own risk. Similarly, the advertisement should not present 'Online gaming for real money winnings.'

The I&B ministry said in a statement: “The advertisements of online betting are misleading, and do not appear to be in strict conformity with the Consumer Protection Act 2019, Advertising Code under the Cable Television Networks Regulation Act, 1995, and advertisement norms under the Norms of Journalistic Conduct laid down by the Press Council of India under the Press Council Act, 1978”.

The advisory further stated that gambling and betting is illegal in most parts of the country, and it poses significant financial and socio-economic risk for the consumers. Advertisements on online betting have the effect of promoting this prohibited activity.

"No gaming advertisement may depict any person under the age of 18 years or who appears to be under the age of 18, engaged in playing a game of online gaming for real money. Further, advertisements of online betting are misleading and do not appear to be in strict conformity with the Consumer Protection Act."

The guidelines have been issued in light of instances of advertisement of online betting websites and platforms in the media following a meeting between the ministry and ministries of Consumer Affairs, and Electronics & IT, along with Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI), News Broadcasters Association (NBA), Indian Broadcasting Foundation (IBF), All India Gaming Federation (AIGF), Federation of Indian Fantasy Sports (FIFS), and Online Rummy Federation (ORF).

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