Like with people of most other countries of the world, Indians enjoy gambling. In fact, we can find mentions of gambling games in our ancient scriptures like Mahabharata. During the excavations at sites of the Indus Valley civilization, which dates back to around 2000 BCE, archeologists have unearthed dice-like structures, complete with markings, made out of terracotta and clay.
These findings are testament that even thousands of years ago, residents of ancient India were fond of such games. Talking about more recent times, casinos and gambling are banned in India since 1867 when the British rulers passed the Public Gambling Act, which made it illegal to visit gambling houses.
Since independence, gambling has been made a state subject, and states like Goa and Sikkim have made it legal to operate casinos within their boundaries. With the opening of these casinos, Indians have been introduced to some of the best casino games, like poker, blackjack, and roulette.
Nevertheless, as gambling and card games are an integral part of the Indian culture, people continue playing games like Teen Patti and Andar Bahar, especially during festivals like Deepavali and Janmashtami, as a means to have some fun. While Teen Patti or Indian Flush is popular throughout India, Andar Bahar is thought to have originated in Karnataka, around the region of Bangalore, about a century ago. Let’s find out how it’s played.
How to play Andar Bahar
Andar Bahar, or Katti as it is popularly known in southern India, is one of the simplest gambling games that you will find in an online casino and some brick-and-mortar casinos of India. One of the biggest reasons for its popularity is that the game involves no complex calculations or card counting, and is based purely on luck.
The names Andar and Bahar denote two sections of a table on which the dealer will deal the cards. It is played with a standard 52 card deck. The game starts with the dealer dealing a single card, face-up, at the center of the table. This card is called the `game card´ or the `joker card´. Now the game is open for accepting bets, and any number of players can join in. The aim of the player is to predict on which side of the table will the next card of the same `value´ will be dealt, irrespective of the suit.
Once all the bets are placed, the dealer takes the game forward by dealing the remaining cards, one at a time, face-up, and alternating between the `Andar´ and the `Bahar´ side of the table.
If the `game card´ has a black suit, the dealing begins from the `Andar´ side, and if the suit of the `game card´ is red, the dealer starts from the `Bahar´ side.
The dealer keeps dealing the cards until the first card of the same `value´ as the `game card´ is dealt. All the players who placed the bets on the correct side win, while those who bet on the other side lose their money.
Odds of winning
Theoretically, there is a 50-50 chance of you winning the game, most casinos payout at the odds of about 1.9x, keeping the house edge.
In addition to the main bet, many casinos allow you to place side bets like the value of the `game card´, suit of the `game card´, as well as the number of cards that will be dealt before the `matching card´ is dealt.
Where can you play online Andar Bahar?
Most popular online casinos like Casumo, LeoVegas, and betway allow you to play Andar Bahar. You can either play the classic variant one on one with the dealer or can also opt for `live Andar Bahar´, where you join a table with a live dealer as well as other online players joining in.