Sports Law in India – Part 2

India is a sports loving nation where players are worshipped by the sports fan. Fan base of the sports in our country has been always a major factor in growth of sports industry in our country. So, for the proper functioning of sports, sports law is very much needed and while reading sports law, we also need to know it’s legal framework.

Legal Framework

Sports subject falls under State list of Seventh schedule of the constitution which is given under article 245 and 246 of Constitution of India. Sport is mentioned in the Entry 33 of the list-II:

“33. Theaters and dramatic performances; cinemas subject to the provisions of entry 60 of List 1; sports, entertainments and amusements.”[1]

The Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sportshas number of organisations sports related working under them, as per their official website, some of which are Sports Authority of India(SAI), Indian Olympic Association(IOA) and National Anti-Doping Test(NADA)[2]which have further different functions in different fields accordingly.

“The Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports was basically created as Department of Sports during organising of IX Asian Games in New Delhi. During the celebration of the International Youth Year,1985 the name was changed from Department of Sports to Department of Youth Affairs & Sports. It changed to Ministry on May27th, 2000. Subsequently, the ministry was divided into two departments i.e. Deptt. of Youth Affairs and Deptt. ofSports under two separate secretaries on 30 April, 2008. The specific subjects which were to be dealt by the sub departments of the Ministry are mentioned in Order of Government of India(Allocation of Business) Rules, 1961”[3]

Growth of E-Sports and Its Laws

E-sports has gained success in India rapidly. The growth of e-sports has been very prominent from pc games to mobile games. The growth could be seen with the revolution caused by mobile games in India as many international e-sports have signed contract representing their roaster in mobile games from India, for e.g. Fanatic and TSM are world famous e-sports organisations. E-sports law includes different cyber laws and contract laws of the players. E-sports not only include PC games and Mobile games, it also includes the Fantasy Games which have also been point of interaction from last few years. a recent study shows that 37% of fantasy sports players consume more than 6-8 hours of real life sports content per week, turning passive sports viewers into active participants.

A Bombay High Court based case on the Dream 11 was a deciding case for the fantasy games as well it also touched the topics of gambling and betting laws along with it.

The Bombay High Court dismissed Sachar’s contention that such fantasy games/ contests are merely game of chance or accident notwithstanding involvement of substantial skill. The judges held that the result of the contest offered by Dream11 is not at all dependent on winning or losing of any particular team in the real world game. Thus, no betting or gambling is involved in such fantasy games. Success in Dream11’s fantasy sports depends upon user’s exercise of skill based on superior knowledge, judgment and attention, and the result thereof is not dependent on the winning or losing of a particular team in the real world game on any particular day. The Court also highlighted that the said issue has been already decided by the Punjab & Haryana High Court in Dream 11’s case itself, wherein it was held that such contests are game of skill and not game of chance.

“The Bombay High Court reaffirms the earlier decision by other High Courts that online fantasy games, such as Dream11, involve exercise of skills of participants based on superior knowledge & judgment and is not merely game of chance. Accordingly, these games should not be treated as betting/ gambling under GST,”

Sports law is an important factor for the growth of the sports industry in country as at global level. Sports related laws are been given equal importance from last few years which have changed whole scenario of the progress of the sports related carrier option as its now provide security to sports oriented people from any sort of injustice. Sports organisations are the main controllers of sports of their respective fields and government objections is minimal in these types of boards. But in some cases boards can’t control the decision making for e.g. Indian team has been stopped from playing Pakistan team by the government due to the tensions between both nations.

Sports law is a profession that connects you with both the law field and sports field, can also help you generate decent income but mainly this profession gives you chance to work for your nation. The new interaction between sports and law has shaped a new need for a greater understanding of how the law relates to the sporting world. India needs expert sports law consultants to meet an amalgam of diverse legal disciplines such as sports law and policy, contract, tort, taxation, labor, competition, TV rights, match fixing and related criminal laws.


[1]The seventh schedule of the constitution, art.245

[2]Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports, available at https://yas.nic.in/sports (last visited on 14/5/2020)

[3]Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports, available at https://yas.nic.in/sports/about-sports-department (last visited on 14/5/2020)

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Ethics during Medival Period

Legal Age for Marriage

Laws related to Sedition

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