Illegal casinos in India are competing strongly with legitimate operations in Goa, Nepal and Sikkim by offering high rollers facilities on a par with those casinos but with higher minimum bets.
The illegal casinos are thought to be in Delhi, Bangalore and Hyderabad and could number as many as eight.
Local media reports that Indian police raided two full-fledged casinos operating in southeast Delhi last year and arrested 14 prominent people. Six luxury cars and cash was also seized.
A source quoted by the Times of India said the illegal casinos were often located in farmhouses owned by rich people. “The casinos at farmhouses are really glitzy. There are about 40-50 persons playing across five tables and are catered to by about 18 staff. The decor too at the casino is top-class and would give the ones in Goa a run for their money.”
The illegal operations typically offer much higher minimum stakes. While it is possible to bet at the same tables in Goa for 100Rs ($1.65), the unofficial casinos in India often offer bets starting at 5000 Rs ($82). Staff also say that the tips are much better in the illegal casinos than in places like Goa.
In another variation illegal operators set up in hotel rooms and operate for about two weeks before moving on.