The Delhi Police have been asked to pull up their socks ahead of this year’s edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL), intelligence sources said.
A month before the tournament’s seventh season kicks off the police have been directed to keep an eye on betting syndicates.
“We have already started putting a system in place to crackdown on betting during this season of the IPL,” said a senior Delhi Police official, on condition of anonymity.
“After what came to light last year - the case is still pending in court - we have evidence to conclude that it was not a new operation or a one-off incident. There are several loopholes that can be exploited and it is these points that we will have our eyes on.”
The informal intelligence alert comes in the background of the match-fixing scandal unearthed by the Delhi police special cell last year which had gotten murkier as investigations had progressed. In Delhi, the special cell had made close to three dozen arrests which consisted of three Rajasthan Royals players, including pacer S Sreesanth.
Meanwhile, subsequent investigations had led to the arrests of Gurunath Meiyappan, the son-in-law of BCCI chief N Srinivasan and Vindoo Dara Singh, a small-time actor in Mumbai for betting.
“This year around, we will keep a watch on all the parties and the after-parties where arrested bookies admitted to having had touched base with players across the board,” said another officer.
“These meetings had then fructified into under-performance deals struck by Sreesanth, Ajit Chavan and Ankeet Chandila who were later arrested and admitted to having met bookies at such occasions,” the officer added.
While the Delhi police plans to go all out to gather information on betting syndicates - many of which were found to be operational at residential colonies across the NCR - this time they plan to check betting on the go, too.
“To evade identification and subsequent arrest, gamblers have been found to place their bets in vehicles zipping in and outside Delhi border. We will rope in our counterparts in the NCR to keep some sort of checking mechanism in place at transit points,” said an officer.