Cyber experts, police suggest ban on game

After the Telangana State Gaming (Amendment) Ordinance 2017 banning online rummy in the State, those running online rummy games have shifted their servers to Chennai, the police believe.

This could be the reason for an increase in advertisements inviting people to play online rummy, especially on websites. Sources in the cyber police, and cyber experts, feel that Tamil Nadu should emulate the Telenagana government’s decision.

Open any website and an advertisement with a grinning man claiming to have won ₹2.5 lakh through online rummy pops up. However, many of them have a warning message that says users in Telengana are restricted from playing cash games. “Hundreds of people silently lose their money playing online rummy games. This can lead to depression or suicide. Understanding the gravity of the issue, the Telengana government passed an ordinance,” said a cyber crime police officer from Hyderabad.

No complaints

However, cyber crime police officers in Chennai said that there have been no complaints pertaining to online rummy games.

“Besides, those who lose money won’t come forward to complain unless they feel cheated. Then, we have to register cases under Section 420 and the Information Technology Act,” said a senior police officer from Chennai.

Most often, demands to ban online rummy fail as it is considered a game of skill by many.

“This is the reason there are no curbs on such games,” said N. Vijay Shankar, cyber law expert.

However, sources in the Chennai police said that as rummy also involves luck, it cannot be termed as merely a game of skill.

“We haven’t got any concrete information about the presence of such servers. But we will coordinate with the Hyderbad police and get details. If the government bans the game, then we can introduce a penalty and imprisonment for those found guilty,” said an officer.

Cyber crime officers said that if an ordinance is passed in Tamil Nadu, then, they can enter premises where they suspect online rummy is being played and conduct searches.

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