Ranbir Kapoor summoned by ED: All you need to know about Mahadev app case
Mahadev app enabled illegal betting on live games
Bollywood actor Ranbir Kapoor has been summoned by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) regarding the Mahadev online betting app case. He's expected to appear before the ED on October 10.
Kapoor, along with other prominent celebrities, is currently being investigated by the probe agency for his involvement as a social media influencer for the online betting platform. Allegedly, he received payments for conducting promotional activities for the app.
The scrutiny also extends to their attendance at the extravagant wedding of Sourabh Chandrakar, one of the co-promoters of the online betting app, held in Dubai.
What is the Mahadev app?
The Mahadev app enabled illegal betting on various online games like poker, card games, chance games, badminton, tennis, football and cricket.
The app is allegedly run by Dubai residents Saurabh and Ravi Uppal. The company runs from Dubai because betting is legal there but illegal in India. Their primary customer base is India.
How does the Mahadev app scam function?
There were many branches of the app in India. To open an app branch, one had to deposit around ₹20 lakh and become an 'admin' with the authority to assign unique IDs to customers.
These branches recruited agents who earned commissions of 6 per cent to 8 per cent when clients placed bets. Agents generated IDs through calls or messages on platforms like Telegram and WhatsApp. Users were provided with an ID and password to access the app for betting. Branch managers, equipped with laptops, mobiles and other gadgets, facilitated online betting.
The app had garnered 30-40 lakh customers through word-of-mouth referrals, boosting its credibility. Payments were mainly made through UPI-based systems, making it easier for the police to track bettors. Users were encouraged to deposit money into savings bank accounts, many of which were fraudulent.
How does the case surface?
The case began with a raid by the Durg police in Bhilai on March 30, 2022, following a tip-off about online betting through the Mahadev app. A case was registered at the Mohan Nagar police station, leading to further raids to target the app's creators and promoters across the Durg district.
Numerous individuals connected to the Mahadev app's operation in various districts were arrested. Transactions worth ₹5,000 crores occurred across India in 2022 through the app. Over 72 cases have been filed, resulting in 449 arrests nationwide.
Authorities have confiscated 196 laptops, 885 mobiles, various electronic devices, and over ₹40 lakh in cash. About 1000 bank accounts linked to the app have been frozen, effectively halting its operations.