IPL cricket betting racket: How an auto spare parts dealer became a bookie for celebrities

After the IPL cricket betting case was originally registered with the Dombivli police station, three more bookies were arrested, including India’s top bookie Sonu Jalan, which revealed actor-producer Arbaaz Khan’s involvement.

india Updated: Jun 03, 2018 11:38 IST
Arvind Walmiki
Arvind Walmiki
Hindustan Times, Mumbai
Sonu Jalan,Arbaaz Khan,IPL cricket betting racket
Bookie Sonu Jalan, who allegedly threatened Bollywood actor Arbaaz Khan over non-payment of money lost in betting on IPL matches, after being arrested by the police, in Thane, Mumbai on Saturday. (PTI Photo)

After the arrest of three bookies from Dombivli by the Thane anti-extortion cell (AEC) on May 18, the names of many big bookies and celebrities have come up.

After the case was originally registered with the Dombivli police station, three more bookies were arrested, including India’s top bookie Sonu Jalan, 42, which revealed actor-producer Arbaaz Khan’s involvement.

After Khan was questioned, two more Bollywood producers have been named. While investigating, the police also seized a “line-holding machine from Jalan’s house in Malad, which used for betting, apart from a software, Betn Take”. It was also found that Jalan and the accused arrested earlier had relations with dance bar girls, said an AEC officer.

How Sonu Jalan became a bookie

Jalan has been running a betting racket for more than a decade in India and abroad. During investigation, the police found he had direct links with gangster Dawood Ibrahim and his aide.

Jalan, an SSC failed student, used to sell automobile spare parts. While doing so, he started betting almost 16 years ago. Some former police officers he knew helped him with few bookies’ numbers. He also used to bet in countries like Pakistan, Afghanistan, Dubai and Sri Lanka.

He came in contact with big bookies and later Bollywood celebrities interested in betting.

“That’s how he came in contact with Arbaaz Khan five years ago,” said a Thane AEC officer. As per the police, according to Jalan’s statement, the whole transaction was done over word of mouth.

“Khan and Jalan started betting on IPL matches. Khan’s losses and wins were maintained on a blackboard at Jalan’s home. When Khan came to know that Jalan was bragging by taking his name, he demanded the deal be finished off. It was then that Jalan told Khan that he had to pay Rs 2.83 crore. There is a video of Jalan threatening Khan. Khan told the police he did not remember this incident,” he added.

It was also found that Rs70 lakh were sent to Dubai-based bookie through hawala channels, which is under probe.

First Published: Jun 03, 2018 08:16 IST