Is Matka Legal in India?

Matka is one of the most popular wagering games to ever happen in India, and it continues to have many fans. 

Although it can be legal to play Matka in India, it is not as simple as it may sound. You need to know exactly the way to do that online and to avoid physical Matka houses like the plague because they are forbidden. That is our purpose with this guide.

What Is Matka Gambling?

Matka is a game that is really similar to lotteries, especially the ones with a Pick 3 format. It had many versions throughout its history in India, but its most popular and modern format has several possible play types and two separate drawings. It used to be based on the price of cotton in the exchange, as we explain in the history of Satta Matka, but it is now simply random.

The harder it may be to match the numbers of the play type that you have chosen, the better the prize. You may try to pick the number that results from the sum of the three drawn digits or the latter instead. If you do not know it well, you can check our guide on how to play Matka. It is a pretty straightforward game, and that is part of the reason behind its popularity.

Satta Matka is completely banned from India, and that applies to all states due to the proportions of its popularity and the risks of irresponsible gambling. However, just as the online lottery is Legal in India, it is legal to play Matka online on websites that are not headquartered in India.

Why Is Matka Banned in India?

Matka became extremely popular in India because it was easy and fast to play. Interested in the profit, hundreds of gambling houses started to appear everywhere, especially in Maharashtra. Either worried about the lack of control it had on that activity or simply because it was not getting its share of that profit, the government banned Matka.

Penalties for Breaking the Law

It is important to highlight that you would only be breaking the law in India by playing Matka locally. In other words, physical Matka houses or websites hosted by Indian companies. The information below was taken from the Indian Penal Code (45 of 1860).

Illegal ActivityPenalty
Organizing Matka houses and playsFine of ₹200 and/or up to 3 months in jail.
Betting on Matka locallyFine of ₹100 and/or up to 1 month in jail.

Satta Matka Lottery Laws in India

The Indian government did not have to create additional laws to ban Matka. If it decides to regulate it one day as it did with the Indian government lotteries, then we will have specific laws to talk about.

For now, the decision that applies is that Satta Matka is banished from India under the Public Gambling Act of 1867 as an illegal way of making money. >Luckily, that is quite an old law, and it does not have implications on online Matka, which is how we legally play it nowadays.

It is not the simple fact that the Matka game is online that keeps it away from the fierce grip of Indian justice. The combination of the fact that playing such games online is not contemplated by the Public Gambling Act of 1867 and the functioning of sites that belong to foreign companies that allow the legal online Matka in India.

Away from the Indian jurisdiction and not affected by the law in any other way, there is one single online lottery site available in India with a Matka game. Lottoland and its modern Matka game, called Jhatka Matka, has drawings every 15 minutes and is the only legal way to play it from India.

1️⃣ Create an account on Lottoland, as it is the only website with a valid Matka game to play legally.
2️⃣ Fund your account with one of the many Indian deposit methods available.
3️⃣ Access the “Casino” section and find Matka there.
4️⃣ Decide what type of play you want for each of your entries.
5️⃣ Pick digits from 0 to 9 or let the system pick them for you.
6️⃣ Pay for the entries and wait for the results in just a few seconds or minutes!

The table below indicates the states where it is legal to play online Matka on websites that are duly headquartered outside of India. If you are in one of the few states where online lotteries are not allowed, even when on foreign sites, you would be playing at your sole risk and discretion.

At the moment, there is no indication of an exception and regulation of the game Matka in India. There are reasons that stop the government from considering it, and I can highlight some of them:

  • The first experience was disastrous, with a complete lack of control.
  • Many states do not even allow simple and safe lotteries yet.
  • A good portion of the population is still afraid of lottery games in general.
  • It might be necessary to install a responsible gambling program and agency first.

If it ever becomes regulated at a national level, it would probably not be available in every state, just like it happens with lotteries.

Depending on where you live in India, there are legal alternatives to the classic physical Matka that is now forbidden. The most important of them is its modern online version, but let me introduce you to all your similar alternatives:
  • Online Matka – You can play it on Lottoland with drawings every 15 minutes. It accepts many popular payment methods in India, and your prize is automatically added to the account.
  • Government Lotteries – If you give up on the idea of playing online entirely and live in one of the 13 states with government lotteries, that could be a possibility.
  • Online Lotteries – Better in prizes and odds when we compare them with government lotteries. You can find dozens of games from all around the world, including the United States, on the online lottery websites in India that we recommend.


At the moment, the online Matka available on Lottoland is the only legal possibility because the website is not from India, and the law does not mention the online provision of the game.
In legal terms, there are four states from which you cannot play any luck game online: Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, and Punjab. In all others, you have that possibility.
Yes, the game on Lottoland is 100% compatible with mobile devices.