Celebrity Actor Arrested Over Illegal Gambling Activity at Own Residence

  • Shaam was arrested along with others for alleged participation in illegal gambling
  • Indian police raided actor’s Chennai, Tamil Nadu apartment after receiving a tip-off
  • Officers seized game tokens and boards as evidence, all suspects later released on station bail
two men in handcuffs
Indian police arrested popular actor Shaam along with others for allegedly carrying out illegal gambling activity at his Chennai apartment. [Image: Shutterstock.com]

Police raid Shaam’s apartment

Popular Indian actor Shaam (Shamshuddin Ibrahim) has been arrested along with other individuals for involvement in illegal gambling pursuits at his apartment in Chennai, Tamil Nadu. Police raided the property owned by Shaam after receiving a tip-off about the activity.

seized game tokens and boards as they placed the suspects under arrest

The authorities seized game tokens and boards as they placed the suspects under arrest and brought them to the Nungambakkam F3 police station on Monday night. The illegal gambling sessions have reportedly been taking place regularly inside Shaam’s first-floor apartment for a number of months, including during the country’s COVID-19 lockdown. They were held between the hours of 11pm and 4am, according to India Today

All individuals arrested were subsequently released on station bail after getting booked on gambling offenses. Sources cite between 12 and 14 total arrests made. No indication was given as to whether there were other notable names among the group. One police source said: “A few other actors also frequent this apartment complex to gamble. But on Monday they were not there.”

Cracking down on illegal gambling

Following Monday’s arrests, a senior police officer said there will be further surprise raids of premises across the city to pin down those involved in illegal gambling activity. The officer outlined that, while a lot of hotels are providing accommodation for COVID-19 patients in quarantine, there have also been reports that some hotel rooms are being used for gambling purposes. 

further surprise raids of premises across the city

The Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court recently called upon the Tamil Nadu government to introduce legislation that would regulate online gaming. It highlighted that online gaming and gambling addiction in young people is putting families in bad financial situations in the state.

The Tamil Nadu state government has a ban on all types of gambling when money is on the line, except for horse race betting. A ban on the selling of lottery tickets is also in place.

Who is Shaam?

Shaam made his acting debut in the 12B movie back in 2001 after starting his career as a professional model. He rose to prominence through popular Indian movies like Lesa Lesa, Ullam Ketkumae, Iyarkai, Race Gurram, and Kick

The 43-year-old lives in the capital city of Tamil Nadu state in South India, which has had 214,000 confirmed coronavirus cases and 3,494 deaths to date. In the country as a whole, there have been 1.48 million confirmed cases, with over 33,400 deaths.

The raid of Shaam’s residence comes shortly after a college student in the region killed himself after gambling away all his savings online. A police officer told NDTV: “The young man had lost Rs 20,000 ($267.22) he had taken from his workplace and appears to have become depressed and killed himself.”