It may be a part and parcel of Diwali tradition, but the district police is in no mood to allow gambling in any form in the steel city.
Senior superintendent of police Akhilesh Kumar Jha has instructed all officers-in-charge to take stern steps against those found indulging in gambling. Deputy superintendent of police (control room) Rajkishore Prasad Yadav said officers have been asked to act on each and every tip-off they receive.
“Apart from relying on information from people, the officers-in-charge have been asked to intensify their own information network to find places noted for gambling, and act accordingly,” said the DSP, who is also spokesperson of the district police.
Sources said gambling was rampant in Jugsalai, Sonari, Sakchi and Sitaramdera in the run up to Diwali.
At Jugsalai, the gambling dens are located on Gauri Shankar Road, Purani Bustee Road, Mahtopara Road and Station Road. Illegal betting is also common in two hotels on Station Road.
“There are over a dozen such dens in Jugsalai where the volume of money put on a single round ranges between Rs 1 lakh and Rs 5 lakh. On Diwali eve, gambling in such dens starts from 8pm or 8.30pm and continues till 3am and beyond,” said a source.
In Sakchi, gambling takes place in an organised manner near Number 9 bus stand and also the fish market. In Sonari, the venues are Gudri Market and Khuntadih, but small-time betting is common.
Gambling also takes place at DB Road in Bagbera and also near the Tatanagar station on the eve of Diwali.