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Visakhapatnam: Online rummy on rise among fisherfolk

Police at S Rayavaram seized mobile phones of the gamblers playing online rummy in one of their recent raids in Visakhapatnam
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Police at S Rayavaram seized mobile phones of the gamblers playing online rummy in one of their recent raids in Visakhapatnam

Highlights

  • Despite the ban on online rummy, a number of youngsters continue to indulge in the gambling to make easy money
  • Such a trend is witnessed in fishermen colonies of Payakaraopeta, Nakkapalli, S Rayavaram and Rambilli mandals

Visakhapatnam: The 61-day annual fishing ban plus 18-hour-long partial curfew has become a convenient setting for the youth in fishermen colonies to indulge in online rummy and make a quick buck. Despite the ban on online rummy, a number of youngsters continue to indulge in the gambling to make easy money.

Such a trend is witnessed in fishermen colonies of Payakaraopeta, Nakkapalli, S Rayavaram and Rambilli mandals.

While some of them fall into a debt trap, others end up getting addicted to the gambling only to fund their vices. With their primary occupation of fishing coming to a grinding halt due to the annual ban, some of the youngsters in these villages have now become debt-ridden.

While some of the people's representatives are extending cooperation to the gamblers in a few areas, in some cases, even they are trying their hands at the online game.

Even though the AP government has banned the online game rummy, the youth consider the game as a means to make money by installing fake GPS location Apps.

While some of the players involved in online gambling slip into depression after losing lakhs of rupees, others are getting addicted to betting as they need to fund their vices.

Sharing details, SI at S Rayavaram police station, V Chakradhar says, "Some of the gamblers form into groups and even check into a lodge to play online rummy. Most of them now are debt-ridden and have become clueless about their future."

Owing to the 61-day-long fishing ban coupled with the partial curfew, the gamblers have once again become proactive. Village outskirts, gardens, parks and rooms in the lodge are turning out to be convenient places for them to play online rummy.

A majority of them belong to fishermen communities. Since the police are at present engaged with the partial curfew duties, the gamblers are utilising the time to indulge in the banned activity sans any fear. "Earlier, we used to book a number of cases against those playing online rummy. Based on reliable information, we caught hold of many gamblers. It is difficult to catch hold of them as they appear as if they were watching a movie.

Soon, we will be raiding the places again," says S Vijay Kumar, CI Nakkapalli. In the past, several cases have been booked against those playing online rummy within Nakkapalli and S Rayavaram police jurisdictions. Dozens of mobile phones were seized from them.

Currently the police are not conducting raids due to the coronavirus outbreak. With the rise in gambling, the fishermen colonies need to be monitored once again.

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