The Kerala High Court on Wednesday issued notice to celebrities Virat Kohli, Tamannah and Aju Varghese in view of their endorsements of online games, in a petition calling for a ban on unregulated online gambling, including games such as online rummy (Pauly Vadakkan v. State of Kerala and ors). .The petition moved by Pauly Vadakkan through Advocate Jomy K Jose came up before a Bench of Chief Justice S Manikumar and Anil K Narendran on Wednesday. ."Online gambling games are a growing menace in the State. These platforms that are even endorsed by celebrities attract their audience with false promise, easily making a fool of unsuspecting people. Primary targets will be middle to low income people who are enticed to make easy money. People fall prey to these fraud platforms only to loose what is left of their life’s savings", reads the petition. .The petitioner goes on to highlight that the Kerala Gaming Act, 1960 does not cover online gambling, wagering or betting activities. Using these loopholes, the petitioner contends that many online platforms are freely flourishing by conducting online gambling and like activities. .The petitioner also notes that various High Courts, including the Gujarat High Court and the Madras High Court have asked the concerned State authorities to explores ways in which online games can be regulated. In Andhra Pradesh, it is highlighted that an ordinance was promulgated so that the existing gaming legislation covers online gambling. .In this backdrop, it is contended that there is a need to either ban, regulate or monitor online gambling games in Kerala as well. ."... many people from different parts of the state have lost lakhs of rupees in the online gambling game. But very often such cases won’t get registered because once a case is filed the victim will also get prosecuted under the law", the petitioner states. .On these contentions, the petitioner has prayed that the Court issue directions so that:online gambling and online betting, particularly “online rummy” is declared to be unlawful and illegal. the Kerala Government bans all forms of online gambling and online betting, unless an appropriate regulator regime is established. .After similar PILs were filed in the Madras High Court, the Tamil Nadu Government recently introduced an ordinance banning online games, including online rummy. Petitions challenging this ordinance are now pending before the Madras High Court and likely to be taken up next on February 10.