Jaipur police have arrested over a dozen bookies who had come to the Rajasthan capital allegedly to settle disputes following betting in the recently-concluded Uttar Pradesh elections.
Police arrested them from a five-star hotel in Jaipur. “The bookies included those who had sustained major losses after placing bets on the UP elections. Many of them are also dealers, who were distraught over the fact that they were being pressurised to pay up the money they had taken from other people during the elections,” said deputy commissioner of police (east) Kunwar Rashtradeep.
Police said the general perception among the betters was that the BJP was going to win around 200 seats, and they had placed their bets accordingly.
“Many of these people lost their money when the BJP won more than 300 seats in the polls. Right from that time, there was a lot of pressure on the bookies and the meeting was convened to sort out these differences,” said Rashtradeep.
Police said that around 18-19 rooms were booked in a five-star hotel, where the people attending the meeting were staying.
“Our estimate is that around 70 people attended the meeting, which took place on Thursday evening. Most of the people who stayed in the hotel were from places outside Rajasthan such as Punjab and Delhi, although many well-known bookies from various districts of Rajasthan were also present,” said the DCP.
Officials said that shortly after the meeting, 18 people were arrested in a police raid.
“By the time of the raid, many of the bookies had left. However, we arrested 18 people and have booked them under section 151 (arrest to prevent the commission of cognizable offences) of CrPC. We are currently interrogating them to find their links with betting rackets,” said Rashtradeep.
Police said they will be lodging an FIR after further investigation.
“Preliminary investigation suggests that around Rs 500-600 crore is involved in this betting racket,” said Rashtradeep.