The games like darts, which are played in amusement parks, are games of skills in technique; but, the manner in which they are actually played makes them games of chance

[Case Brief] Manoranjitham Manamyil Mandram vs The State Of Tamil Nadu And Ors.

Case name Manoranjitham Manamyil Mandram vs The State Of Tamil Nadu And Ors.
Case number AIR 2005 Mad 261
Court Madras High Court
Bench Justice P Dinakaran, Justice S A Kumar
Author of the judgment Justice P Dinakaran
Decided on 4 January, 2005
Relevant Act/Sections Constitution of India – Article 19 and Article 20

Tamil Nadu Gaming Act, 1930 – Section 4

Brief facts and procedural history

The appellant is the petitioner in W.P. No. 3466 of 2004 preferred for issue of a writ of Mandamus to forbear the respondents from preventing the functioning of the society in the premises at No.5, Dindigul Road, Near St. John Church Junction, Trichy and also from preventing the members of the petitioner society from playing games of Rummy, Table Tennis, Chess, Carrom Board.

The grievance of the petitioner /appellant is that the respondents are arbitrarily interfering with the affairs of their club infringing their rights conferred under Article 19(1)(b)(c)(g) of the Constitution of India and the appearance of the respondents to the petitioner /appellant’s club would tarnish the image of the club.

The lower court held that the respondents are only discharging their statutory function and that has to be taken in its own spirit and not otherwise.

Issue to be decided

Whether Section 4 of the Tamil Nadu Gaming Act, 1930 is in violation of Article 19 and Article 20 of the Indian Constitution?

Ratio and decision – 

The games like darts, which are played in amusement parks, are games of skills in technique; but, the manner in which they are actually played makes them games of chance. Therefore, games of chance, whether they are played in public place or in a club, can always be interfered with by resorting to the provisions of the Tamil Nadu gaming Act. 

The question whether a particular game is a game of skill or chance is to be decided on the facts and circumstances of each case. As and when proceedings are; initiated against the appellant in accordance with law, the appellant shall always have the right to question the same or challenge the action of the respondents if it is not in accordance with law.

The writ appeal was disposed of accordingly. The writ appeal was disposed of accordingly.           

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