Lotteries and Gambling in India Old & New

The lottery is more than half a century old in India. There are 13 states in India where lotteries are legal. They are Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Goa, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Punjab, Sikkim, and West Bengal. It comes as no surprise that the lottery is wildly popular. While legal lotteries are relatively new, lottery games have been in the subcontinent for thousands of years. Let’s explore some lottery games that are part of today’s culture in India, and have a very long history in the land.

While the states regulate the lotteries available to the people who reside there, many Indians choose to play their lottery games online. It is legal for any adult (over 18) to bet on lotteries online. Betting online gives them the freedom to experience various kinds of lotteries from all over the world.

Lotteries are not the only historic games in India. Some experts believe gambling games date back to the 7300’s BC. There is writing in Ramayana that describes some of these ancient games. It is believed that these games describe what we now know as chess and dice games. Many of the cards and gambling objects found in Europe have Indian Symbols. In many ways, India is responsible for the love of the lotteries and gambling games enjoyed globally today.  

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In India, gaming was used for more than just entertainment. Kings in ancient India were believed to have used gambling and games to settle conflicts. While the accounts have been written and rewritten throughout history, the Mahabharata references stories of rulers who used this, among other methods, to avoid war.


High-speed internet has been a game-changer for Indians. It is evident that technology gives people what they want. They want lottery variety, convenience, and safety. With mobile apps, smartphones, tablets, and computers, lotteries are accessible anytime and anyplace. Today’s websites are user-friendly. Bets are placed with credit cards, debit cards, and bank accounts. Quality sites are easy to verify, and wins are published (with permission.)


Keno has been a favorite lottery game in India for hundreds of years. It is believed that Keno originated in China between 205 and 187 BC during the Han Dynasty. Historians believe Keno was a game used by the Chinese government to finance expensive government projects like the Great Wall of China.  Some people attribute the popularity of the game then and now to the fantastic influence of numerology on the population. Numerology, primarily the Chaldean method, is widely practiced in India.

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Keno is a basic game of numbers. You begin by selecting from 1 to 10 numbers for each bet. Then select the number of draws you want to bet on. The more draws you bet on, the better your chances of winning. Keno is an exciting, fast-paced game that is like a cross between a lottery and Bingo. Now you Choose your stake multiplier. The higher the multiplier, the higher your win. Now it is time to place your wager. When the bets are closed, a group of 20 numbers is chosen from a pool of 89 numbers.

There are several kinds of Keno. Keno 24/7 is an online game that has a draw every four minutes. Sikkim Keno is a Keno game that comes from the town of Sikkim. When playing in India, one can only play this variety in the town it is named for. Of course, online games are available to all.

The future

The tight regulations put on lotteries by the Indian government have done little to change the love and practice of betting on them. Lotteries are a part of Indian heritage. The use of technology has afforded Indians the freedom to explore all of their favorite games. Sports betting, casinos, scratch-offs, and global lotteries are now as easy as getting online and setting up an account.

According to European Business Review, the online gambling market is currently worth approximately 1 billion US dollars. It is projected that by the end of 2024, the industry will be worth 112 billion US dollars. Today there are 750 million internet users in India. In three years, that number is expected to climb to 900 million. Given these numbers and that the teenage population is heavily into online gaming, it is safe to say the numbers will continue to rise in the coming years.


The Indian people enjoy lotteries. This fact has stood the test of time. There has never been a time in history where Indians could access the games they love without fear of laws that control them until now. Technology and quality online sites give people everything they need to enjoy their favorite pastime and have fun from anywhere. Indian lottery winners are showing up on the internet every day, and the future looks bright for this industry and lottery lovers globally. We can’t wait to see where this trend grows in 2022!

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