Vijayawada

Law always catches up: police

A second-year engineering student, Manish (name changed) was an avid cricket fan. He had a sound understanding of the game, and would accurately predict bowling strategies and match outcomes.

His knowledge of the game soon drew the attention of an online betting gang, which lured him to join their ranks. Manish, enticed by the promise of easy money, soon became addicted to betting.

However, the law finally caught up, and Manish found himself in jail, a shocked family unable to come to terms with what happened.

 

Similar stories abound in the city. Shashank (name changed) of neighbouring Telangana was keen on getting into cricket betting and was in close contact with a group of bookies. When police busted the gang, Shashank’s name came up and he too was detained, putting his family through an ordeal.

"An MBA student of Guntur district, who hails from a poor family, earned ₹23 lakh in four days. Soon, he was caught and is now in jail," a police officer requesting anonymity told The Hindu.

"Youngsters think they will try their hand just once and stay away. But they win some money, and are sucked deeper into betting. There is no getting out of it, and there is no escaping the law," the police officer said, advising the youth to shun betting.

No borders

The ‘betting mafia’ has no boundaries, and the gangs have links to neighbouring States, and in some cases, even to other countries. "The call data retrieved from the phones of the punters led the investigating officers to Singapore, Dubai, Malaysia and other countries. The police were shocked to know the reach of the overseas network of the betting gangs," an officer said.

Things go awry

Nadikuditi Lokesh Varma (20), a native of Mattagunta village in Krishna district, reportedly ended his life by consuming poison after losing a large bet over a year ago.

Another engineering student, Gurram Teju (20), of Vijayawada, who had gone missing, was found dead under suspicious circumstances after he lost money in December 2017. "We suspect that the bookies murdered Teju and dumped his body in the sea," the victim’s family members said.


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Printable version | Oct 26, 2021 2:36:14 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Vijayawada/law-always-catches-up-police/article27173555.ece

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