Hyderabad: Cops raid posh Lodha Bellezza flat, bust gambling racket

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Cyberabad police busted a hi-tech gambling racket that was being operated from a luxurious flat located in a highly secured Lodha Bellezza, a gated community at KPHB on Thursday (24 February) and apprehended 13 people including the organiser involved in gambling.

The Madhapur Special Operations Team (SOT) raided a flat located on the 18th floor of the upscale apartment and caught the accused red-handed. In another incident, a ruling party legislator was allegedly caught playing rummy but was let off by the police.

According to reports, the organisers Muthyapu Murali and Patlolla Pradeep took the flat on rent for Rs 1.50 lakh per month and were also paying Rs 20,000 maintenance charges per month. Police seized Rs 2.52 lakh cash and other material from them.

The operators had also hired three servants to work in the flat and one person to pick up and drop people. One security person of the apartment was also working for them to give them information. They were handed over to KPHB police for further investigation and action.

In October, the Cyberabad police in a similar incident had raided a farmhouse on Hyderabad outskirts belonging to a Tollywood hero and booked 30 people including politicians for gambling in a casino style.

Over the past couple of months, rummy apps with shady business structuring have started targeting people in the Telugu states with YouTube and social media ads. Gaming for stakes online or offline is prohibited in both states. Apps with the names Dash Rummy (Spherisol Technology Private Limited), Rum Rummy (Frittle Play Fantasy Games Private Limited), and Rose Rummy (Frittle Play Fantasy Games Private Limited) have flooded social media with ads promising high returns. These companies are primarily based in Mumbai or Delhi. Congress-leaning regional media reported that rummy operators have entered into a deal with a ruling party leader to ensure no action is taken by law enforcement.