India raids gambling den of dead congressman

Silhouette of handcuffs with police car on backsideA raid of a former Indian Congressional Leader has resulted in more than 60 arrests. Madhya Pradesh Police swarmed the home of the late Dharmendra Sonkar, arresting his brother and confiscating guns and money on November 7.

The raid consisted of over 200 policemen, who went after Gajendra Sonkar, nicknames Gajju, for suspicions of running a gambling den. They confiscated 17 weapons, ammunition, Rs 7.5 lakh ($10,129 USD) and “relics of deer,” according to one outlet.

Jabalpur Superintendent of Police Siddharth Bahuguna said, “The police came to know about illegal gambling from a house owned by Gajendra Sonkar. When police raided the house, 41 people were found to be gambling.”

“During the raid, the police also found a large number of weapons and ammunition, including carbines, pistols, rifles, in-country pistols, revolvers and air guns,” he said. The Sonkar brothers will face other criminal cases as well, Bahuguna noted.

How the police knew that Gajendra Sonkar was operating a gambling den isn’t explicitly stated in any of the current reports. However, Gajendra’s brother, Dharmendra, was shot dead in March of this year. It was reported at the time that his attackers had animosity with him as they were rival gambling den operators, so the family business seems pretty clear.

India has yet to regulate gambling throughout much of the country, although grey and black-market options are increasingly becoming easier to access. Although some provinces are increasingly seeing questionable offerings out of China, other regions are still going with the old school gambling den as their unlicensed gambling option of choice.

As has been noted at so many gambling industry events, so long as gambling is illegal and unregulated in India, it remains an unsafe activity for so many, but one they will continue to chase. Now India may have shut down a minor gambling ring in Jabalpur, but only after the death of a former congressman, and for what gain?