Mobile Premier League, Other Online Gaming Apps Block Access in Karnataka as Ban Takes Effect

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 regulation, 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 ability.”

The newest ban has intensified issues that rising state rules may hit the nascent however booming gaming sector in India, the place overseas 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 mentioned: “Sorry! The regulation 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, considered one of India’s hottest gaming apps backed by Tiger International, was nonetheless operational, however Paytm First Video games was not.

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

Karnataka, house to a number of the world’s greatest tech firms and India’s tech capital Bengaluru, is the most recent 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 courtroom.

An trade supply had instructed Reuters earlier that these states have been necessary for the gaming enterprise and account for roughly 20 % of the entire enterprise for firms.

Roland Landers, the chief government of the All India Gaming Federation, mentioned “the trade will problem this in courtroom and search authorized recourse.”

Two different trade sources instructed Reuters on Wednesday that avid gamers and a few firms have been planning to file courtroom challenges towards the brand new Karnataka regulation.

The regulation 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 may trigger monetary hurt.

© Thomson Reuters 2021

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