The rapid development of communication channels, online infrastructure, and the internet has created the necessary conditions for a gambling boom in India. According to research done in 2023, Indian bettors spent over $1.7 billion wagering on sporting activities. Another study showed that 8 out of every 10 Indians participate in activities like betting, slots, or casino games at least once a year.
As we can see, sports betting has found its way into every part of society. And the same applies to the country’s film industry. More and more Bollywood celebrities are spending their time enjoying the thrill of gambling in sports. Here we list the top 5 Bollywood celebrities that love to gamble.
1. Akshay Kumar
Akshay Kumar is one of Bollywood’s larger than life characters. The 54-year-old has numerous awards next to his name and has reached legendary status in India. The number one actor in India is also a sports fanatic and even owns a football club in India. Aside from football, like most Indians, Akshay loves watching cricket.
The actor loves to wager on sports and then spend his time watching the games he has money on. Thanks to his net worth of 240 million dollars, sports betting for him is more about the fun and excitement and less about the money. This is probably one of the reasons the actor always keeps his smile on, even when his bets lose.
2. Raj Babbar
Raja is an Indian actor who has played in dozens of films. He is a very passionate sports fan and enjoys spending his time watching football, horse races, and of course cricket.
Raja takes sports betting much more seriously than a lot of other famous people. He is known for being highly analytic and not placing bets unless he is certain that that is the right move. His friends say that the actor researches every team and their players before deciding if that is the game he wants to bet on. He just loves to take his bets through the internet, on sports betting sites just like this website.
3. Aamir Khan
Aamir Khan is sometimes referred to as “he who can’t do any wrong” in Bollywood. The 56-year-old is an actor, director, producer, and talk show host. His favourite sporting activities are cricket matches and horse racing and often watches these events from the first rows.
Like most Bollywood celebrities, Khan is a die-hard cricket fan, and he loves to bet on the Indian Premier League. However, when it comes to gambling, he doesn’t stop at sports betting as he also enjoys casino games.
4. Shilpa Shetty
Aside from being the only female on our list, Shilpa Shetty is one of the most popular actresses in the Indian film industry. She has been on the scene for over 30 years and during this period she acted in over 100 movies and won numerous awards.
Tennis and horses are two of Shilpa’s favourite hobbies, and she enjoys playing golf with her husband. At one point she was also the owner of the Indian Premier League team Royals but then sold it to Manoj Badale. Unlike other actors from this list, who mostly bet on cricket, Shilpa’s sport of choice when it comes to betting is football. Of course, when it comes to sports betting her partner Raj Kundra had a big influence, as he brought this habit with him from London.
Jeetendra belongs to the old guard of Bollywood. The 79-year-old actor began his acting career back in the 60s. He has played in some of the movies that sculptured Bollywood to be what it is today. Titles like Himmatwala, Tohfa, and Sanjog are some of the most famous ones. A testimony to his greatness in Bollywood is the Filmfare awards that he won in the 60s, 70s, and 80s.
Jeetendra or Jetu Ji as he is also called is also fond of sports. He has been seen playing tennis and football on multiple occasions. When it comes to betting, his favourite two sports are football and cricket, later being his favourite sport to watch. The interesting thing is how much he loves sports betting, he loves card games even more. He is known for his lavish parties during Diwali where his guests can enjoy themselves playing card games.
Today, most of the population in India practices some kind of gambling activity. With the laws about brick-and-mortar casinos, a large majority of the population is going online to place their wagers.
Famous Bollywood actors are no strangers to this trend. They look to find a quick rush or take their mind off everyday responsibilities. And the best part is that they are financially situated and even the losing bets won’t have a big impact on their life.