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Fake IPL in Gujarat dupes gamblers from Russia

Mehsana (Gujarat): A fake IPL tournament with farm labourers acted as players to dupe Russian gamblers. The gang hired labourers and unemployed youths for 400 rupees per game. A team of 21 farm labourers took turns wearing jerseys of Gujarat Titans, CSK, and Mumbai Indians. It gave an impression to the Russian gamblers that the original IPL was underway. The tournament began in remote Gujarat village 3 weeks after the real IPL concluded. They installed a cricket pitch, complete with ‘boundary lines and halogen lamps’. They used computer-generated graphics to display scores on a live-streaming screen. High-resolution cameras were also used to telecast the matches. They broadcast the matches live on the YouTube channel called ‘IPL’. Crowd ambiance effects were downloaded from the internet. Villagers used Harsha Bhogle mimic for commentary to make tournament appear real and authentic. Villagers had received the first installment of more than 300,000 rupees from the punters. The tournament had reached its ‘quarterfinal stage’ before the organisers were arrested. The whole episode was reminiscent of the Oscar-winning 1973 movie "The Sting"

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