37 persons held from different places for gambling

Kathmandu, January 14

Police conducted raids at two gambling parlours in different places of Kathmandu Valley and arrested 37 persons on charges of gambling yesterday.

Police also seized over Rs 470,000 from them.

Following a tip-off, a police team raided the third floor of Durbar Marg-based Hotel Landmark and caught 27 persons, including two women, gambling and betting on kauda (a game played with 16 sea shells). According to police, Rs 389,520, USD 100 and 16 pieces of kauda were confiscated from the gambling parlour.

Separately, police arrested 10 gamblers from a house at Tikathali of Mahalaxmi Municipality-1, Lalitpur. Playing cards and Rs 80,640 were confiscated from them. The accused have been booked under the Gambling Act, 1963, which officials say is not tough enough to deter seasoned gamblers and operators of gambling dens as they easily get off the hook by paying a meagre fine of Rs 200 and four-day police detention.

After police intensified vigil on casinos to curb the entry of Nepali gamblers there, the number of people visiting casinos has decreased. However, casino frequenters have started covertly operating gambling dens in hotels, restaurants and houses, according to police. Bearing this in mind, police have stepped up raids on houses, huts, restaurants and hotels that could potentially be used as gambling dens in the Valley.

Police reports suggest that gambling and crimes are interlinked as gamblers are more likely to commit crimes to satiate their addiction to gambling. Crimes are also likely to occur at gambling venues over betting. Retired government employees, businesspersons and contractors top the chart of gamblers, according to police.