Madras High Court refuses to entertain PIL to Ban Online Games

Online Gaming Gambling Law Insider

Greeva Garg – 

The Madras High Court disposed of a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed, sought to impose restrictions on Online Games in India.

The PIL was filed by E Martin Jayakumar, who raised grave concern over the addiction of children and young adults to Online Games.

The division bench comprising Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice Senthilkumar Ramamoorthy observed that, “There is no doubt that children are addicted to online games and mobile phones. However, courts cannot order any regulation on such issues based on the personal sense of morality of a petitioner or judges.”

The Order passed by the High Court stated that, “Courts should be slow in entering into such areas on the personal sense of morality of the individual complainant or the Judge or Judges concerned. There is no doubt that when there is some illegal action or something which is detrimental to larger public interest, Courts intervene; but in matters of the present kind, especially when elected Governments are in place, such matters of policy should be left to the wisdom of those representing the people instead of Court issuing a diktat.”

The Court has asked the petitioner to make representation of the issue to the Union Government and the State Government within four weeks since it is a matter of policy on which the Court may not have appropriate expertise.

The concerned authorities are asked to give their response within eight weeks after the petitioner’s representation of the issue.

“At least at the initial stage, the duty of Court should be to direct complainants to the executive for a more wholesome and studied policy decision to be taken by the executive than may be possible at any Court,” the Bench opined.

The Court said that, if the executive failed to take any appropriate action, the order of the Court does not prevent further complaints on the issue.

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