India: 4 arrested after police bust cricket betting racket

Betting on cricket is illegal in India.
Betting on cricket is illegal in India.

Four people have been arrested in Andhra Pradesh on charges of organising illegal bets on Pakistan Super League matches.

India.- Police in Andhra Pradesh have busted an illegal cricket betting racket that was taking bets on the sixth edition of the Pakistan Super League.

According to local media, four people were arrested through a joint operation between the City Task Force and the PM Palem Police.

During the raid, police seized SIM cards, 29 mobile phones, laptops, TV sets, five account books and INR1,590 (US$21.70).

Police believe the cricket betting racket operated on the match between Quetta Gladiators and Peshawar Zalmi, and the match between Quetta Gladiators and Peshawar Zalmi.

Those arrested are aged between 29 and 34. They used an app to communicate ratings of the match

In May, a cleaner was arrested in India after police found he was “pitch-siding” – taking advantage of the delay between live sports action and its television broadcast to place bets – during an IPL match.

According to Times of India newspaper, an Anti-Corruption Unit (ACU) officer found the cleaner talking by phone in a secluded area during an IPL match between Rajasthan Royals and SunRisers Hyderabad on May 2.

When the officer asked the cleaner what he was doing, the man told him he was talking to his girlfriend, but when the officer asked him to dial the number he was talking to, the suspect tried to escape leaving behind his two mobile phones.

The ACU officer immediately reported the incident to the Delhi Police.

Cricket remains India’s most popular sport. There is a huge underground cricket betting market said to be worth between US$45bn and US$150bn a year. Around 80 per cent of illegal sports betting in India is on Cricket.

However, Shabir Hussein Shekhadam Khandwawala, the head of the Anti-Corruption Unit of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), said that he is firmly against the possibility of legalising sports betting in India.

Unlike his predecessor, who had stated that legalising betting would be the most effective means of preventing corruption within the game, Khandwawala believes legal sports betting would encourage match-fixing.

He said: “We can make the rules more strict. We will work on that. It is a matter of great prestige that cricket is largely free of corruption. Credit should go to the BCCI for that.” 

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