Gujjus are known for a lot of things – but they are a bit missing in the creative field. I mean, when compared to their industrious nature and a penchant for business – the movies or art is not their first calling.
It is in this context that a piece of news caught my attention.
In a bizarre incident, a gang in Gujarat almost pulled off an elaborate con by creating a fake Indian Premier League (IPL) tournament and duping Russian punters who bet money on such cricket matches.
The incident took place at a remote farm in Molipur village of the Mehsana district. The scam was busted by the cops just before the quarterfinal stage of their so-called “Indian Premier Cricket League” and four gang members were arrested.
According to the cops, the fake matches began three weeks after the actual IPL concluded in May. The matches used to be broadcast live on YouTube and bets were placed by the punters on their “official” Telegram channel.
To create an impression of the IPL-like tournament, the grifters installed a cricket pitch, complete with “boundary lines and halogen lamps”. They even hired 20 farm labourers and unemployed local youth for ₹ 400 per game, and made them wear jerseys of IPL teams to pull off a near-perfect con job.
“Besides this, the accused had set up high-resolution cameras on the ground and used computer-generated graphics to display scores on a live-streaming screen,” police inspector Bhavesh Rathod said as per AFP.
Players took turns wearing jerseys of the Chennai Super Kings, Mumbai Indians and Gujarat Titans, the police informed. They also revealed that crowd noise sound effects were downloaded from the internet and walkie-talkies were also used during the fake matches by the umpires to make the tournament appear authentic.
A fake IPL! That they were able to pull it off (before getting caught that is) is quite the achievement in itself. In the days of social media and Google, it’s a wonder that they were even able to conceive such a con, let alone pull it off.
A good amount of planning, creativity and diligence – of course, put to the wrong use.
Everyone has potential, many are learned, but how many manage to apply this in the right manner? It takes diligence to pull off a con as well – what if they had used the same amount of hard work in doing something right? Would have been such a good experience!
Anyways, here is to cricket and enterprise, fake and all:)