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Gaming Apps Block Entry in Karnataka as Ban Takes Impact

Sequoia Capital-funded Cellular Premier League (MPL) was among the many first few gaming startups that started blocking entry to customers within the Indian state of Karnataka on Wednesday following a ban on on-line gaming.

The legislation, which got here into impact late on Tuesday, bans on-line video games involving betting and wagering, and “any act or risking cash, or in any other case on the unknown results of an occasion together with on a recreation of talent.”

The most recent ban has intensified issues that rising state rules may hit the nascent however booming gaming sector in India, the place international traders have pumped in thousands and thousands of {dollars} in current months.

On Wednesday morning, MPL’s gaming app confirmed messages to customers in Karnataka that stated: “Sorry! The legislation in your state doesn’t allow you to play Fantasy sports activities,” “Fantasy video games are locked,” and “money video games are locked.”

The gaming app provides fantasy cricket and soccer video games and permits real-money wagering on them.

Dream11, one in all India’s hottest gaming apps backed by Tiger World, was nonetheless operational, however Paytm First Video games was not.

Dream11 declined to remark, whereas MPL and Paytm didn’t instantly reply.

Karnataka, residence to among the world’s largest tech firms and India’s tech capital Bengaluru, is the newest Indian state that has banned such on-line video games after Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. Tamil Nadu had additionally imposed such bans, however its invoice was struck down by its excessive court docket.

An trade supply had instructed Reuters earlier that these states had been essential for the gaming enterprise and account for roughly 20 p.c of the full enterprise for firms.

Roland Landers, the chief govt of the All India Gaming Federation, stated “the trade will problem this in court docket and search authorized recourse.”

Two different trade sources instructed Reuters on Wednesday that players and a few firms had been planning to file court docket challenges in opposition to the brand new Karnataka legislation.

The legislation imposes hefty fines and jail phrases on violaters and has been carried out amid rising issues that on-line gaming platforms, like playing, are addictive and might trigger monetary hurt.

© Thomson Reuters 2021

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