The Indian Government has now officially recognized online gaming by including eSports in multi-sport events. This marks a significant turning point for esports in the country since formal recognition will help to further promote the growth of the huge, multi-billion-dollar gaming industry in India. MeitY (Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology) has added a new section for “matters relating to online gaming.”
There has been considerably more discussion about treating Esports similarly to conventional sports. Even though this subject has been discussed in Parliament on several occasions, most of them have ended in a deadlock. The online gaming industry has long been controversial since it is blamed for youth violence, but this decision by the Indian government will now offer more opportunities for individuals who want to pursue careers as esports athletes.
The Indian government will shortly publish guidelines for online gaming
Rajeev Chandrasekhar, the Union Minister of State for Electronics and IT, thereafter announced on Twitter that the government would shortly publish guidelines for intermediaries in online gaming. The Indian government openly admitted that it had no intentions to restrict the hours people might spend playing online games. However, the guidelines will be created with gaming addiction and violence as important considerations by the government.
Lokesh Suji, Director of the Esports Federation of India and Vice President of the Asian Esports Federation, remarks on how crucial this move is for the country’s esports scene, saying,” Great news for us to begin the New Year. We welcome this announcement by our government under the leadership of Hon’ble PM Modi ji, which will open new avenues to pour in more investment opportunities in this booming industry.”
Although the Indian government officially acknowledges online gaming, the games directly are not. As everyone is aware, the two most played video games in India, BGMI and Free Fire, are now banned in the country. The only remaining uncertainty is whether or not these games will be allowed to be played again.
It would be difficult to draw any conclusions at this time; we’ll have to wait till the Government of India issues formal guidelines on online gaming. The government may consider lifting the ban (under certain strict data guidelines) despite the slim likelihood as they dominate India’s gaming industry.