Online Gambling: Chhattisgarh Police’s 2021 Crackdown: Pre-ED Actions

Vivek Agrawal 

Mumbai, October 5, 2023

The Chhattisgarh Police initiated its crackdown on this illegal operation back in 2021. To date, they have registered a total of 75 FIRs, resulting in the arrest of 429 individuals from various parts of India.

A Bounty of Seized Items

During their operations, authorities have confiscated 191 laptops, 858 smartphones, as well as additional materials associated with illegal betting activities and luxury cars, with a collective value of approximately Rs 2.50 crore.

A Vast Web of Bank Accounts

Chhattisgarh Police reported that more than 3,033 bank accounts were utilized within this illicit network.

As part of their ongoing investigation, approximately 1,035 bank accounts have been frozen, containing a total deposit of around Rs 15.50 crores.

Multistate Legal Actions

Apart from Chhattisgarh, FIRs have also been lodged against the app’s operators in other states, including Andhra Pradesh.

The Titans of the Game: The Dammani Brothers

These siblings, owners of a jewelry store and a petrol pump, played a pivotal role in facilitating the large-scale hawala (illegal money transfer) movement of funds generated from this unlawful enterprise.

This ill-gotten wealth was subsequently used to bribe both law enforcement officers and politicians.

The Dammani brothers received a commission of Rs 100 per lakh for handling the hawala funds, amassing earnings of approximately Rs 6 lakh through the transfer of hawala funds ranging from Rs 80 to Rs 100 crores.

They maintained communication with the primary accused, Ravi Uppal, via phone.

Additionally, their jewelry shop, Abhushan Jewelers, served as a hub for hawala transactions, channeling these illicit funds to ASI Verma.

The Role of Satish Chandrakar

The fourth accused, Satish Chandrakar, leveraged his connection with ASI Verma to orchestrate police raids on two branches of Mahadev Book in January 2021.

To mitigate the risk of such raids, Chandrakar was granted a panel/branch of the app to operate for his own gain.

Advocate’s Defense

Advocate Syed Zeeshan, representing all four accused in court, has vehemently asserted their innocence.

He stated, “They are innocent. The allegations are baseless, and the ED has no evidence linking them to my clients. They were granted only six days in custody, which we opposed, as opposed to the requested 14 days.”


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