The Delhi High Court has agreed to hear a petition that seeks to declare poker as a game of skill and asks to drop the gambling charges against players arrested from the Greater Kailash premises on 16th September, 2016.
This petition was filed by Karan Mutha, who was arrested for playing the game of poker from the Greater Kailash-1 area of New Delhi on 16th September, 2016.
In his petition, Mutha claimed that 7 persons were arrested from a Greater Kailash-1 premises by the Delhi police and an FIR was lodged against them under the Delhi Public Gambling Act, 1955 for gambling in a common place. The petitioner also claimed that the police had not specified the game that was being played on the premises in Greater Kailash.
Mutha claimed that he was playing poker at the raided premises and that poker being a game of skill is exempt from gambling under Section 13 of the Delhi Public Gambling Act.
Mutha in his petition mentioned that the states like Nagaland, the West Bengal statute and Karnataka have already recognised the game of poker. To prove his argument further, he also stated in the petition that various websites are organising poker games for stakes all across India but when poker is played in a physical space, police initiates the action.
Mutha urges the High Court to drop the FIR and criminal charges against him. Justice Mukta Guptahas asked the petitioner to file the licenses (if any) for playing poker. The court has also directed the police to file a status report on the investigation made in the case. The matter has been postponed for a further hearing on 27th April, 2018.
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