Ex-MLA, 29 others held for gambling at farmhouse ‘owned’ by Tollywood star

Hyderabad: Cyberabad police on Monday stepped up investigations into a gambling case in which 30 people, including a former MLA, were arrested from a farmhouse allegedly belonging to a Tollywood actor.

The farmhouse near Manchirevula in the Rangareddy district was raided by the police on Sunday after it had been tipped off about a major gambling game had been organised in it. Those arrested include a former MLA from Mahabubabad, Sriram Bhadraiah, and some realtors.

The police have booked the accused under the Telangana Gaming Act and seized Rs 6.77 lakh in cash, apart from 33 mobile phones, three cars and 29 gambling sets. Bhadraiah, incidentally, had been arrested earlier in 2017 for allegedly assaulting a realtor using the butt of his licensed gun.

According to the police, the main accused in the case is G. Suman, a resident of Manikonda in Hyderabad. He had taken the farmhouse on rent for a day ostensibly for a birthday party, but allegedly invited over several people for a gambling game instead.

He is said to have taken the farmhouse on rent from an actor’s father, who had taken it on lease for a film shoot from a retired IAS official. The police officer investigating the case said he could not confirm if the farmhouse belonged to the actor. “There’s no record of the farmhouse in the police station. The investigation is under process,” the officer said.

The police investigations, meanwhile, have revealed that the main accused, Suman, already had cases registered against him in Hyderabad and Bengaluru under the Anti-Gambling Act. He had been arrested in the past. Suman is also allegedly involved in land grabbing cases in Vijayawada. A team of police officials from Andhra Pradesh have arrived to assist the investigations.