With the Indian Premier League (IPL 2022) on, the menace of online cricket betting has made a comeback in Greater Hyderabad.
Rachakonda police on Wednesday claimed to have busted an online cricket betting racket with the arrest of seven persons. The police seized property worth Rs 56 lakh.
Rachakonda Police Commissioner Mahesh Bhagwat told reporters that on a tip-off, the Special Operations Team (SOT) conducted raid in Satya Nagar colony and apprehended seven accused and seized Rs 11.80 lakh cash. The police also found over Rs 31 lakh in two bank accounts.
The raid was conducted when the accused were accepting bookings for betting during the match between Rajasthan Royals and Royal Challengers Bangalore.
A case under sections 3 and 4 of the TS Gaming Act was booked against the accused.
Main organiser or bookie identified as Tanniru Nagaraju, line operator Gundu Kishore, sub-bookies Tanniru Ashok and Chemmeti Vinod, punters Kotla Dinesh Bhargav, Medishetty Kishore, and Bojana Raju were arrested. Two other accused are absconding. The key accused all hail from neighbouring Andhra Pradesh.
Nagaraju was earlier arrested by Vanasthalipuram in a similar case in 2016. He was operating the betting racket with his friend Kirhore and two distant relatives Ashok and Vinod.
The bookies had arranged telephonic lines and given numbers to punters. The betting starts after the first ball of the match and goes on till the last ball. It fluctuates depending on the situation of the match. The punters make calls to bookies during the match and place their betting. The bookies through their collection agents were collecting money from punters either in cash or through online payment.
The Police Commissioner appealed to the youth to stay away from betting. He said registration of cases would mar their chances of securing passports and getting jobs. “It may be fun for one day but you will have to suffer for the rest of your life,” he said