The local police raided a poker room in Surat on 30th April much to the hue and dismay of the poker fraternity across the country. The poker room was operated by AAA Gaming Pvt. Ltd via promoters Jaydeep Dawer and Hetal Desai who were both arrested along with players and staff. In all, the police made 32 arrests which included affluent businessmen and confiscated cash and valuables worth over 1 crore rom their possesion.

The story, which was covered extensively in a TOI article, was completely unexpected as the legality of poker is under scrutiny in the state of Gujrat. The High Court had been petitioned in December 2016 “seeking directions to the authorities to allow it to organize the game of poker on the ground that it is not gambling because it involves an element of skill.”

Mr. Jaydeep Dawer Releases Statement

Jaydeed Dawer, a member of the Indian poker fraternity for quite some time, took to social media today in issuing a statement and urging all poker players to stand up for what he believes is right. Mr. Dawer also called out the mainstream media and offered to explain his version of the story and the injustice he believes the sport of poker and those who participate in it are subjected to. His post was liked and share multiple times.

Mr Jaydeep Dawer’s statement in full:

This morning as the Sun Shone, it guided me to pen down the TRUTH related to the events that have happened in the past few days. The Media has been all over scanting for any misinformation they can extract from the air since 30th April. This is my effort to make it easy for them when it comes to POKER!!!!

  1. POKER is a skill Game and it is out of purview of the Bombay Prevention of Gambling Act of 1955 & Gujarat Prevention of Gambling Act 1987.
  2. Poker has a legit status in West Bengal & Karnataka. A Criminal Miscelleous Application Petition is pending before the High Court of Gujarat since more than 3 months. This is our effort to to obtain the same status for the game in the state of Gujarat.
  3. Media quotes, “Poker mania nu jugaar ramaato hato”. Well, If its Poker, it cant be termed as Gambling & if its Gambling, its definitely not Poker. And there is no such game as Poker mania.
  4. Media says, we were operating a Casino. A Casino comprises of games Roulette, Black Jack, Flush, Ander Bahar which are purely games of chance, while a Poker Room though a part of the casino is always separate and insulated from the above games. At our facility, we did not have any provision for any of the above Games of Chance.
  5. Media says I travel the country to play Poker and I am an expert in the game. Is it unlawful to travel in the country to play Poker? Expertise requires skill in the game and we have numerous players who are experts in Poker. But One can only get lucky in Games of chance and to be an expert in them without cheating is unheard of I guess!!! This Media themselves prove that Poker is not Gambling as they compliment me of being an expert in the game.
  6. A Law makes an activity legal/illegal. In absence of a law, can an activity be vetoed Illegal?

If there is no law for Poker, its high time some definite laws are framed about the game rather than framing a few Poker passionates as accused without proper knowledge & Truth about the game.

This is a humble request to the Media (Divya Bhaskar, Gujaratmitra, The Times of India) that if they are genuinely concerned about this issue, they can contact me on 9825120132 and procure the specific details on any of the above mentioned points.

To all my Poker Buddies – This is not a war but it is a small fight from our end to get Poker where it belongs in our country. If all of you agree, please share this post. Thanks!!!!!
#pokerlawsinindia #poker #TOI #Divyabhaskar #Gujaratmitra #skillgame #legal #pokerinindia #pokerasport

Mr. Jaydeep Dawer's statement on social media
Mr. Jaydeep Dawer’s statement on social media

Note: Images are sourced from GLaws.in and Facebook.

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