Guwahati: The Meghalaya government has planned to allow casinos, online gambling and gaming for tourists coming to the state.
Taxation Minister James PK Sangma said the state government has come up with the Gaming Act following which the Gaming Rules 2021 will facilitate issuing of licenses to operators to conduct games of skill and chance both in the online and offline versions.
“As we have seen in many states, this venture has positive impacts not just in terms of GST revenues but also in terms of generating a lot of employment opportunities from the vibrant tourism industry,” Sangma said.
According to reports, the groundwork for preparing Meghalaya as a hub for online gaming online betting, and legalised gambling began in February last year when the Meghalaya Prevention of Gambling Act, 1970 was nullified by the state government.
The move to get into gaming in a big way comes some forty years after archery-based betting was first legalized in Meghalaya, raking in big revenue to the state’s exchequer The Khasi Hills Archery Sports Association conducts the well-known ‘Shillong Teer’, an archery-based lottery.
As per the regulations laid down by the state government, tourists and visitors in the state will have to produce documents similar to what the bank required for the KYC (Know Your Customer) to participate in any gambling or gaming activity.
After the legalization, Meghalaya will become the third state to legalize online and offline gaming and gambling. The other two states are Sikkim and Nagaland.