As the Maharashtra state government announced Unlock 4, the number of people heading out has increased considerably. This could be a boon for the people that have been eagerly waiting to resume work. While, the government eased the lockdown so that people benefit from it, the consequences of some people using this as an opportunity to engage in illegal activities also have to be tolerated.
In the early hours of Monday, the Pune rural police raided a resort in Lonavala located off Pune-Mumbai Highway and arrested 72 people involved in gambling. Among the 72 arrested were 60 men and 12 women who were identified as tourists from Gujarat. The men were involved in gambling and women were present for serving alcohol. A total of INR 3.4 Lakhs and gambling chips of face value INR 40 Lakhs were seized from the resort. Vaibhav Swami, Assistant Inspector said, “All the 72 people, including the 12 women, owner and the manager of the resort have been arrested.” They have been booked under IPC sections 188, 269, the Maharashtra Prevention of Gambling Act and violation of the Epidemic Diseases Act.
The central government of India has issued a fresh set of guidelines as part of the Unlock 4 phase of the Covid-19 lockdown. Earlier, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) had taken a tough stance on tourism and related activities, however, now a lenient policy has been adopted. This lenient policy allows tourists to visit Lonavala without e-passes too. The desicion to revise the guidelines was taken after the Hotel and Restaurants association of Lonavala and Khandala (HRALK) demanded that the requirement of e-pass should be cancelled as there were no local tourists and it has affected their industry considerably.
The state government has allowed hoteliers to book 33% of their total capacity under Mission Begin Again. The easing down of lockdown could have been one of the reasons for the people to be involved in gambling. For more stories related to gambling, keep reading GutshotMagazine.com