Sports have always been a popular activity for almost everyone. It helps to improve one’s physical and mental health while enhancing their abilities to do mundane tasks with more efficiency. Sports eventually developed into a larger and more competitive scale which allows sports enthusiasts to push their limits further beyond and compete to win attractive prizes and gain popularity among the sports community. However in the darker parts of the sports community, there’s a side activity that sports enthusiasts would participate in major tournaments and that is sports betting.
Sports betting involves sports fans to place bets during tournaments and gain income while the tournament is being held. Although sports betting could be a minor gambling activity for some sports fans to participate as a side activity, the darker side of sports betting involves some players to be victims of sports betting as they are forced to throw their match in favor of their agency receiving benefits from the outcome of the match. When caught, the players will be banned from participating in any tournaments in the future and are not allowed to coach or administrate the sport they are banned from. If sports betting is as bad as what it sounds like, how does the law react especially in an Islamic country like Malaysia?
For starters, Malaysia has two laws, the Gambling Act 1995 and Sharia law with the main difference is the Gambling Act 1995 punishes non-Muslim offenders while Sharia law punishes Muslim offenders. Under these laws, the police force are focusing on raiding betting sites and bookies but not the gamblers who placed the bets themselves. Therefore, the only sports betting in Malaysia that is legal is horse racing through parimutuel. However, gamblers are able to find a workaround by gambling in websites that are legalized in their country. Because of that, Malaysian gamblers are able to avoid breaking the law as using an online website legalized by another country is outside of Malaysia’s jurisdiction. As an Islamic country, Malaysia forbids Muslims from participating in any activity related to gambling as it goes against the teachings of the Quran which discourages Muslims from gambling due to an individual who is addicted to gambling can ruin the relationship of his loved ones and his personal life. If a Muslim is found gambling, they are subjected under the Sharia law which fines RM 3000, two years of imprisonment or both. Other races in Malaysia however are able to gamble with Chinese being the most gamblers in the country due Chinese are known for believing in superstitions that will give them signs of good fortune.
Overall, sports betting is dangerous to participate in as you can never tell when you will be roped into the darker side of sports betting. Even gambling in general is a bad idea since you can be easily blinded by greed and confidence that you can even throw away all your hard earned cash to a game of chance. But if you want to gamble, try it in a smaller scale like gambling with your family and friends and enjoy the moment.
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