Cops raid 5-star hotel in Santacruz, book 18 people playing teen-patti for ‘gambling’
The Mumbai Crime Branch on Sunday raided a five-star hotel in Santacruz East and arrested at least 18 businessmen for gambling inside the hotel room.
Acting on a tip-off, officials with Unit-8 of the Crime Branch raided room number 1120 of the hotel on March 4 night, said DCP Vinay Rathod.
18 people, who were playing ‘teen-patti’ (gambling), were arrested and Rs 6.61 lakh in cash and Rs 3.24 lakh worth plastic coins were seized from them, the officer said.
All 18 were booked under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code and later released on cash bail.
In India, states are entitled to formulate laws for gambling activities within their respective jurisdiction. Currently, only three states allow casinos in the country – Goa, Daman and Sikkim.
In states where gambling is not permitted, like Maharashtra, the Public Gambling Act of 1867 makes operating a gambling house, assisting in the operation of a gambling house, visiting a gambling house, financing gambling and being in possession of gambling devices a crime.
The Public Gambling Act also explicitly states “nothing in this Act shall apply to games of mere skill wherever played”, implying that in absence of other laws, wagering on games of skill is legal.
Interestingly, the Supreme Court of India has held that ‘rummy’ is a game of skill, while classifying ‘teen-patti’ as a game of chance.
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