MUMBAI: Bollywood actor and film-maker Arbaaz Khan has been summoned by the Thane Police in connection with an alleged Indian Premier League (IPL) betting racket. The questioning is likely to take place on Saturday at around 11 am.
The Thane Police had on Friday sent a letter to Arbaaz to join the probe in the wake of the arrest of an alleged bookie who was placing bets on the recently-concluded IPL. The IPL betting racket was busted on May 15 by the Anti-Extortion Cell (AEC) of Thane Police’s crime branch with the arrest of four people in Mumbai, including Sonu Jalan alias Sonu Malad, who is believed to be one of the top bookies of the country
The police have readied a list of questions that it is likely to ask Arbaaz. He will be questioned on his ties with Sonu, the alleged bookie who has been arrested. He is likely to be asked questions over the first time he met Sonu, how many times have the two met and who else was present during those meetings.
To ascertain whether there are others in Bollywood who may be involved too, the police is likely to ask him the names of other people in the film industry who have links with Sonu. Arbaaz may be asked whether he was involved in betting and if he had the knowledge that Sonu had links with the underworld. He may also be asked if he placed bets on any of the matches.
It has been reported that Sonu used to blackmail Arbaaz over a video. The police are thus likely to question Arbaaz over the details and whereabouts of the video.
Questions are also likely to be asked about his brother Salman Khan. The police may ask him if Salman and other family members were in the know of his links with Sonu and his alleged involvement in betting.
He may be asked about how much money he has placed in bets, his alleged ties with the underworld and the meetings in Dubai. He can also be asked if his films Dabangg and Dabangg 2, which he produced, were funded by the underworld.
After the arrest of four people, the police during investigation established a “connection” between Jalan and Arbaaz, said Senior Inspector Pradeep Sharma, head of the AEC. “We suspect that Khan had placed bets on IPL matches and want to scrutinise his bank transactions,” another police official said.
Arbaaz allegedly lost Rs 2.80 crore in betting to Jalan and was not paying the amount, following which the bookie had threatened the actor, the official said citing the interrogation of the arrested accused.
Jalan allegedly ran his betting racket from Dombivli in Thane district of Maharashtra. Jalan has been arrested in connection with the case under sections 420,465,468,471rw 34 of the IPC, section 4(A),5 of the Gambling Act and also IT Act 66A registered in the Dombilivi police station.