Bollywood actor and superstar Salman Khan’s brother Arbaaz Khan on Saturday confessed to the police that he had indulged in betting in some of the IPL matches. He was summoned to the police station for questioning in connection with the investigation into an IPL betting racket. His name came up during the interrogation of bookie Sonu Jalan.
Speaking to the media after his interrogation, Arbaaz Khan said, “I answered all the questions asked by police. It’s an ongoing investigation and i will continue to co-operate with the probe.”
Interestingly, Arbaaz is only the latest celebrity to be caught in an IPL scandal. Sources report that Malaika Arora, Arbaaz’s ex-wife, rushed to Galaxy apartment to meet actor and filmmaker after he returned home post the interrogation in IPL betting scam by Anti Extortion Cell, Thane, Mumbai.
Many celebrities have been involved with IPL and with its heady mixture of glamour and sports, the annual tournament provides more drama than a typical Bollywood movie even when the actual cricket is not being played.
In 2013, three Rajasthan Royals players – Sreesanth, Ajit Chandila and Ankeet Chavan were suspended on charges of spot-fixing (‘fixing’ a particular outcome of a part of a match and not the entire match). After further investigation, Vindu Dara Singh, son of late wrestler and actor Dara Singh, was arrested for his alleged links with bookies. He was released on bail 13 days after his arrest. He claimed innocence. After Arbaaz Khan’s confession, it is possible that Vindu may be summoned again.
Bollywood actor Shilpa Shetty’s husband and former co-owner of Rajasthan Royals Raj Kundra was also questioned by the Delhi police for his alleged links with illegal betting. He admitted betting on his own team and was suspended by BCCI from the team. Later, the Supreme Court banned him for life from all cricketing activities for good measure.
In India, betting in sports is illegal and a punishable offence. This is not the case with other cricket playing nations like Australia, England, Sri Lanka, South Africa and New Zealand.