Legalization Betting in Cricket

Supreme Court had appointed Lodha committee to look into IPL spot fixing, in order to make cricket governance transparent and clean. Lodha panel recommended legalising betting and gambling in Cricket except for players, administrators and officials. The ban has driven the betting and gambling industry underground thus difficult to monitor or regulate. A law, making it legal and regulating it would bring the industry in front. Any cases of spot fixing would be easier to investigate. It will contribute to central exchequer. Countries like UK, Australia and Canada regulate the betting industry. World wide, the sports betting market is worth USD 400 billion.
However, I think that legalising betting and gambling may have an adverse societal impact and hit the sport’s credibility. It will directly and indirectly, enhance and encourage the vice and the tendency of gambling in rather unrestricted manner. It could encourage match fixing due to link between two. Challenges would arise for law enforcement agencies as there will be efforts to fix more games. The flourishing underground betting and gambling economy may not come out and operate in dark defeating the purpose of the law. Example from Brazil showed that it could lead to rise in gambling addiction and crime.
In my view, the other recommendations of Lodha panel need to be implemented first to make Cricket governance clean and transparent before legalising betting and gambling.

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