Is cash gaming legal in India?

Card games offered on our platform are skill-based card games with a loyal fanbase in our country. In this section, we seek to explain its positive legality status, as upheld by the (Hon.) Supreme Court of India. We are also presenting answers to several commonly asked questions like ‘are card games for cash legal in India’ or 'is online card gaming legal in India', how to legally play card games in India and suchlike for your reference.

Is it legal to play online card games for cash on

Yes, it is legal to play card games for cash on

It is legal because card games (such as rummy and poker) are skill-based games in India and are protected under the relevant scope of Article 19[1](g) in the Constitution of India. Not only this, playing card games for cash or otherwise comes under the gamut of business activity because it is a skill-based endeavour.

In 1968, (Hon.) Supreme Court of India specifically ruled that card games are skill-based games that rely on several core concepts of Mathematics and Game Theory. Fifty years on, India has come to terms with this welcome decision and several enthusiasts are taking to this game to enhance their skills.

In a boost to the aforementioned landmark decision, the Supreme Court of India later observed that:

  1. A competition where success depends on a significant degree of skill cannot be termed as ‘gambling.’
  2. While there may be an element of chance involved in the game, card games are largely a game of skill and thus may be called a game of ‘mere skill’.

Please note that the scope of state laws in Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Odisha & Telangana are not clear and as such, we do not offer any card games for cash there. Thus, the players from these states are also not allowed to play this game for money until further notice from the state governments.

This does not stop them from playing card games for free.

Games of Chance vs Games of Skill

Games of Chance:

The Indian Law considers gambling as an act of wagering of money or something of value on an event that may have an uncertain outcome. The end of this activity is to win money or other material goods of interest.

One may assume that any game whose result is primarily or exclusively based on luck or chance can be equated to a game of chance. Such games fall under the purview of gambling and are prohibited by Law.

Games of Skill:

Games of Skill are those games where an outcome relies largely or exclusively on the skills of the players. All such games are legal because a significant count of skills is required to play and win them.

Card games offered on our platform are skill-based endeavours and are thus legal to play. A victory in a card game depends on a player’s intelligence, decision-making skills and sharp memory. This is to second a successful use of softer interpersonal attributes like sharp observations skills, self-confidence and emotional stability.

Are Games of Skill protected under the Indian Law? Yes! Games of Skill are protected by Law in India. In 1968, the (Hon.) Supreme Court of India declared that all mutually agreed competitions (including cash or otherwise) that involve significant skills are categorized as business activities and are protected under Article 19(1)(g) of the Constitution of India.

Except for a few Indian states (Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Odisha & Telangana), it is legal to play card games in India.


Online card games on the CardBaazi platform involve an element of financial risk and may be addictive. Please play responsibly and at your own risk.