Mahadev Book operators using UPI to launder money; ED takes swift action

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The Enforcement Directorate’s recent actions against Mahadev Book illegal betting app has brought many things to light. In the same vein, a new method of money laundering using UPI IDs has now emerged after ED’s ongoing probe against Mahadev Book app.

As per reports, Mahadev Book operators used to get in contact with individuals with lower income levels. These operators lured them with the promise of small monthly payments in exchange for their UPI accounts, which were then used to launder money earned through betting.

Prior to this, the fraudsters used bank accounts that were obtained similarly. Mahadev Book’s fugitives used to dupe people by misusing their Aadhaar Cards. However, the use of UPI puts on a whole new angle to the investigation.

ED recently led a search operation across several angadiya entities who were helping the Mahadev Book operators launder money. The officials seized a total of Rs 417 crore worth of assets during their search, as per CNBC-TV18.

ED also found receipts of transactions worth Rs 112 crore to an event management firm in Mumbai. Further investigation revealed that Chandrakar spent over Rs 200 crore on his wedding ceremony, out of which the said amount was given to the firm for wedding preparations.

Celebrity engage in Saurabh Chandrakar’s wedding ceremony

Investigation also revealed names of various celebrities that were paid to attend the wedding. Celebrity presence during an event for these betting platforms is not uncommon. Many of these celebrities has also promoted Mahadev book. ED is currently preparing to question these celebrities regarding their involvement.

Prior to that, a Red Corner Notice was also issued against Chandrakar and Uppal after the ED sought help from Interpol to take down the illegal betting ring.

The masterminds of the entire operation, Saurabh Chandrakar and Ravi Uppal are hiding in Dubai. As per ED, they operate though franchising “Panel/Branches” to their associates in India on a 70:30 profit ratio.