19 vehicles, shotgun, Rs.2.40 lakh in cash and 14 cell phones seized
A strong posse of security personnel led by Superintendent of Police N. Bhaskaran conducted a raid on a “gambling den” located in an interior place near Ulundurpet on Saturday night.
The policed rounded up 27 persons, including a Vice-Chairman of a Town Panchayat Thandavarayan (said to be owing allegiance to the ruling All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam), the land owner Singaravelan (57) and his son Tirupati (30). In all 19 vehicles, one single barrel muzzle loading shotgun, Rs.2.40 lakh in cash and 14 cell phones were seized.
Mr. Bhaskaran told The Hindu that on receiving an anonymous call about the illegal activity going on in the farm house, he along with 40 police personnel, including two Inspectors, set out to nab the culprits.
He said that the den was located two kilometres deep inside a secluded spot and the four-wheeler could go only up to one kilometre and from there the access to the place was through a single pathway.
Mr. Bhaskaran said that in his service he had not seen such a gambling den with large number of cars and several moneyed persons coming on weekends.
There were 14 cars, four two-wheelers and one autorickshaw. Soon after reaching the parking lot the SP posted some of the personnel there to guard the vehicles and to prevent anybody from giving a slip to the police.
The SP further said that getting the scent of police movement those in the farm house switched off the lights and ran away making the police to chase them in the unchartered territory, in pitch darkness, where at least two ground-level farm wells and one prawn farm were located.
Some of the persons even challenged the police for having entered into their territory and threatened the latter with dire consequences. With great difficulty the police had to operate and yet certain persons escaped under the cover of darkness.
Those rounded up hail from places as far as Chennai, Tiruchi, Salem, Puducherry, Villupuram and Cuddalore. They were habituated to play the banned games such as “mangatha, ulle veliye and rummy” with high stakes, running into lakhs, throughout Saturday night and until Sunday dawn.
It was also learnt that criminals indulging in jewellery heist too used to frequent the place. There were also reports about the winners of the card games facing danger from the organisers.
The organisers used to have their own security guards and it was they who would pick up the visitors and drive them through the single path to the farm house where gambling was taking place.
They were booked under the provisions of non- bailable offences, including the Arms Act and the Gambling Act, and remanded in judicial custody, Mr. Bhaskaran said.
Keywords: gambling case