Activists, experts urge ban on online games involving cash

Citing the rise in number of suicides and cybercrimes due to online games, activists and experts have urged the Centre to ban online games like PlayerUnknown's Battle Ground (PUBG) and portals running online rummy.
Activists, experts urge ban on online games involving cash


"Like banning TikTok, the Centre should ban online games like PUBG and rummy portals, as youth are losing large amount of cash on online games," said A Sankar, executive director, EMPOWER, an NGO based in Thoothukudi.
The recent incidents of an 18-year-old polytechnic student from Kanniyakumari who was addicted to PUBG killing self because his father did not allow him to play the online game and a 17-year-old from Punjab spending Rs 16 lakh on the game sent shockwaves across the country.
Activists say addiction is the key reason for youth spending money and even taking their own lives over online games. "Online games have the potential of making youth addicted to games easily. When they are glued to the game, they don’t realise the money they spend on the games. This addiction also affects them psychologically, and when they are unable to access the game, they behave violently resulting in suicides," added Sankar, noting that the lockdown due to COVID-19 had further contributed to this addiction.
Cyber experts warned that youth might end up losing big sums on online games. "Many youth have no idea about the safety of the websites they access. For instance, there are several fake websites for rummy. When the youth pay cash through their debit or credit cards, there is every possibility that the cards might get hacked,” said Vinod Kumar Arumugam, a cybersecurity expert from Chennai.
He added that there was a mafia operating behind rummy portals to siphon off money. "When playing rummy with cash is illegal, how can the government allow these portals to function? Government should frame a clear policy about it,” Vinod said.
Recently, State Information Technology Minister RB Udhayakumar had called for a ban on PUBG. “Tamil Nadu government had sent recommendation to ban the game," he said.

Visit to explore our interactive epaper!

Download the DT Next app for more exciting features!

Click here for iOS

Click here for Android

Related Stories

No stories found.
DT next