Ahmedabad: Five policemen were suspended by Gujarat Director Genenral of Police (DGP) P C Thakur here today for allegedly having a nexus with cricket bookies nabbed by Enforcement Directorate (ED) on March 19.
The two suspended inspectors are Jayesh Brahmbhatt, serving in the Special Operations Group (SOG) at Gandhinagar, and A M Saiyad of Vadodara Rural police. Among the three constables suspended, two are from Vadodara and one is from the Anand police department.
Additional DGP (Adminstration) A K Singh said that the five policemen were found to be in contact with cricket bookies who were caught by ED from a farmhouse in Vadodara on March 19 for running an international betting racket.
“Primary reports recieved from ED as well as Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) indicate that these policemen were in contact with an organised crime syndicate of bookies.
Thus, we suspended them so that they don’t influence the ongoing probe,” Singh said.
On March 19, ED had raided a farmhouse in Vadodara and busted the betting racket based on cricket matches during the World Cup.
Officials had also arrested two bookies, namely Kiran Mala and Tommy Patel from the farmhouse, as well as seized 15 laptops and 100 celllular phones along with other electronic devices used by them to run the racket.
ED investigations revealed that Mala and Patel used to accept bets worth Rs 20 crore on each World Cup match and the two were in touch with all major Indian bookies to accept bets. As per a rough ED estimate, the entire racket may run into Rs 4,000 crore.
Later, to probe the role of policemen allegedly involved in protecting these bookies, top ACB officials swung into action and cracked their nexus with bookies, ED sources said.
After recieving reports from ACB and ED about the involvement of these policemen, the DGP decided to suspend five of them today, sources said.