The Andhra Pradesh government on Thursday issued ban orders in the state on online games like rummy and poker. The state cabinet arrived at the decision to ban the games stating they were "pushing the youth on a wrong path". Under the chairmanship of Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy, the order was passed against online gambling, said Information Minister Perni Venkataramaiah (Nani). 

Speaking to reporters after the cabinet meeting, the minister stated that the practice of online gambling has become a vice that was damaging the growth of the youth by "misleading" them. Mr Nani added,  "So we have decided to ban all such online gambling to protect the youth."

As per this latest decision by the Andhra Pradesh state cabinet, online gambling organisers would be jailed for a year, apart from being penalised, in case it is a first-time offence. The jail term would last up to two years along with a fine for the second offence. Furthermore, a warning has also been issued to those who indulge in playing online gambling games that it would attract them a jail term of six months, the minister added.

India witnessed a startling rise in the number of people taking to online gambling during the coronavirus lockdown. As per reports, the online gaming industry in the country witnessed a staggering 21 percent growth during the COVID-19 lockdown, with the larger chunk of it being gambling. 

The Indian online gambling scene also saw a boom in terms of an all-time record high traffic including revenue generation during the lockdown months of 2020. A majority of the success and the growth has been attributed towards the marketing of the games such as online casinos and gambling sites that are advertised on several platforms.

A petition in July was filed in the Madras High Court, which sought the arrest of Indian cricket captain Virat Kohli and actress Tamannaah for promoting online gambling. A Chennai-based advocate had sought direction from the High Court for the ban on the online gambling apps, which the petition stated was getting youngsters addicted to them. Furthermore, it stated that online gambling companies were using the celebrity status of stars like Virat Kohli and Tamannah to brainwash youngsters.