Supreme Court upholds Dream11 fantasy sports format as game of skill


The Supreme Court has upheld online fantasy gaming site Dream11’s fantasy sports format as a ‘game of skill’ by its order dated 30th July 2021. Through this order, it dismissed a Special Leave Petition (SLP) that alleged that the Online Fantasy Sports (OFS) format offered by Dream11 amounted to gambling, wagering and betting and is not a ‘Game of Skill’.

This reaffirms the judgments passed by the Punjab & Haryana High Court and the Bombay High Court, and has upheld the judgment passed by the Rajasthan High Court, where the legality of the online fantasy sports format as offered by Dream11 as a ‘Game of Skill’ was sustained.

“We are happy that the Hon’ble Supreme Court has upheld the legality of the Dream11 fantasy sports format. We reiterate our commitment to driving sports engagement through fantasy sports, which brings sports fans closer to the sports they love and helps build a larger sports ecosystem in India,” said Harsh Jain, cofounder and CEO of Dream11.

While deciding on the Public Interest Litigation (PIL), the Hon’ble High Court of Rajasthan had declined to entertain it, stating that in the light of orders passed by Punjab & Haryana High Court and Bombay High Court, the matter of gambling has already been put to rest. Hence, the legality of Dream11’s online fantasy sports format as protected by the Constitution of India, is now final by law and in fact.

Gopal Jain, senior advocate, Supreme Court of India, said, “The Supreme Court while dismissing the SLP against Rajasthan High Court Order, has emphasized that, with the dismissal of SLPs against orders of Punjab & Haryana and Bombay High Court, the issue of gambling is already decided by it. Simply put, the Fantasy Sports formats which are in line with the analysis of the Punjab & Haryana High Court are games of skill and are legal formats no more open to scrutiny.”

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The Dream 11 format is based on the format approved by the Federation of Indian Fantasy Sports Federation, currently the only judicially affirmed and industry-recognised format that is permitted under law, said Mahesh Agarwal, Advocate on Record, Supreme Court of India, “By re-affirming its earlier orders on the fantasy sports platform offered by Dream11, it has yet again given its final stamp of approval on the legality of the platform,” he said.

Dream 11 is a fantasy sports platform with over 110 million users playing fantasy cricket, football, kabaddi, basketball, hockey, volleyball, handball, rugby, futsal, American football & baseball, on it.



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