The Madras High Court, on Tuesday, has issued notices to Team India captain Virat Kohli and BCCI President Sourav Ganguly for promoting online fantasy league apps. Hearing a petition filed by Mohammed Rizvi, the Madurai Bench of Madras HC also issued notices to notable actors Prakash Raj, Rana Daggubati and Tammana Bhatia.
The petitioner has alleged that online gaming has adverse effects on children and its addiction can also slow down brain growth. Furthermore, the plea has also alleged that online gambling is ‘plunging’ Indians into penury and forcing people to commit suicide.
‘Ban online games’
The petitioner has sought an order of interim direction to ensure that online games ‘safeguard’ Indian youth from unwanted cybercrime, cyberbullying and social media network. Rizvi has also urged the court to order a detailed probe in the matter and consequently ban ‘online games, erred groups, website and social network’.
Pertinently, Virat Kohli endorses Mobile Premier League (MPL) while BCCI chief Ganguly is the brand ambassador of My11Circle. Apart from this, the BCCI had roped in Dream11 – fantasy gaming mobile app – as the title sponsor for the IPL 2020 post Vivo’s exit.
Earlier on October 16, the Rajasthan High Court had dismissed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) against Dream11 Fantasy Private Limited, alleging that the game being played online is nothing but ‘betting’ on the cricket team. On the contrary, the Gujarat High court had recently observed that the present legal framework regarding gambling should be regulated to include virtual/cyberspace gambling. The Bench of Chief Justice Vikram Nath and Justice JB Pardiwala had directed the Gujarat state government to consider a PIL, seeking regulation of gambling, and do the needful in ‘larger public interest’.