Some weeks after the governor returned it, Tamil Nadu adopts a measure banning internet gambling
When the governor of Tamil Nadu, RN Ravi, sent the measure back earlier this month and questioned the state parliament's ability to craft a legislation on the topic, the bill to outlaw internet gambling was approved by the assembly on Thursday for the second time in six months.
"With sorrowful heart, I stand here in this House. MK Stalin, the chief minister, requested the assembly on Thursday to enact the Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Internet Gambling and Regulation of Online Gaming Bill once again after stating that 41 persons had passed away after losing money in online gambling. The measure was first approved by the assembly on October 19, 2022. The governor delayed signing the law for many months before returning it on March 6, 2023.
Stalin referenced Union minister Anurag Thakur's written answer to an unstarred question earlier this month that highlighted the state's ability to act on betting and gaming as evidence that the state has every right to "streamline, regulate, and safeguard individuals" residing within its jurisdiction.
Stalin urged all parties to support the legislation. He urged senators to support the measure in order to save lives, saying "This government cannot run without a conscience."
The government developed recommendations based on a study provided by a committee headed by retired judge K Chandru, he said, adding that "one more life should not be lost and one more family shouldn't be out on the streets because of the ills of internet gambling."
Speaker M. Appavu intervened to emphasize that no legislator criticised the governor, and a few words deemed to be critical of Raj Bhavan were removed as Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) floor leader Nainar Nagendran asked the House not to attack the governor during the debate since he had given his reasons for returning the bill.
The governor, who returned the measure, did approve the ordinance on October 1, Appavu pointed out to the House. The identical text was approved by the House and sent to the governor on October 19 without a single punctuation mark or comma (2022). Please bear it in mind, the speaker remarked, addressing Nagendran of the BJP.
Durai Murugan, the water resources minister and organizing secretary for the DMK, said that it was unfair of the governor to return the bill. Murugan said that the House "had the right to criticize the governor," but he stressed that they were not doing it at the speaker's request.
The government further emphasizes that Banwarilal Purohit, Ravi's predecessor, accepted a measure on the same subject that had been handed to him by the previous AIADMK administration in November 2020. The high court invalidated the law due to specific clauses, but no issues with the assembly's legislative authority were brought up.