With the arrest of four persons, including a Byculla police sub-inspector, the police claimed to have busted a cricket betting racket at a guesthouse in Dadar, Mumbai. On Tuesday night, a team led by senior Inspector Bharat Bhoite, attached with the Matunga police, raided Ramee Guestline hotel in Dadar East.
In one of the seventh-floor rooms, four men were found using a web portal, http://www.lotusbook247.com, for betting. They have been identified as Mikin Shah (33), Manish Vijay Singh (31), Prakash Ghanshyam (32) and sub-inspector Gyaneshwar Kharmate. Six cellphones worth Rs 1.93 lakh were recovered from them.
Two other accused, Pantar and Mehul Jain — believed to have been coordinating over the phone with the four in the room — are absconding. Pantar and Jain handle the website for bookies, said police.
The accused were allegedly betting on ICC Worldcup match between Australia and England. Australia won the match by 64 runs, becoming the first team to qualify for the semi-finals.
The four arrested accused have been booked under the Public Gambling Act. They were produced in Bhoiwada court on Wednesday and released on bail.
The police said they are yet to ascertain role of the sub-inspector. “During inquiry, he claimed to be a friend of Mikin… We are investigating whether he was getting monetary benefits from the racket, or was himself involved in the betting circles,” said an officer.
Kharmate was suspended from the department on Wednesday. Additional Commissioner of Police Veeresh Prabhu said: “His role is yet to be ascertained. He was present at the place of offence and therefore he has been named as an accused in the case. We are probing his role. Investigations are also underway to assess the scale of the racket.”