A Pimpri Chinchwad police sub-inspector Somnath Jhende recently won Rs 1.5 crore on a fantasy sports gaming platform, Dream11 on Wednesday and is now suspended for misconduct. Somnath breached the code of conduct by participating in the online game Dream11, PTI reported citing a police official.
The Pimpri Chinchwad police chief of the department had asked a deputy commissioner of police-rank officials to conduct an inquiry about the situation and submit a report.
As per the official, “Zende won the lottery through an online gaming platform and after winning a windfall prize, he interviewed the media. Subsequently, there were some negative reactions about the police department….he took part in such an activity and gave an interview in a police uniform. On these two counts, he has been suspended.”
He participated in an online game Dream11 which is an Indian fantasy sports platform that allows people who have participated to play fantasy cricket, football, kabaddi, hockey, handball, basketball, rugby, futsal, volleyball, American football and baseball. Users create a virtual team on the website where real-life players compete against other players and earn points based on their performances in real matches.
The company was founded back in 2008 and introduced fantasy sports in India for people who love cricket in 2012. Somnath also participated in making a team for a cricket match on the website which made him a millionaire. The sub-inspector had been participating in the contests for the last few months and had even given interviews while wearing his uniform.
The Pune police department became aware of his win only when word spread of Jhende winning a large amount in the game even though Somnath Jhende had been playing at Dream11 for months now. He won after he made a Dream11 team for the Bangladesh vs England cricket match.
The police ordered an investigation into the matter and it came out that Somnath played without permission. Further, he gave media interviews wearing his police uniform which was against the ethics of his duties.
Jhende was suspended by the police from his duties on Wednesday.
Deputy Commissioner of Police Swapna Gore, who led the investigation, stated, “After the investigation, it was found that he played the Dream11 game without permission, leading to his suspension. This serves as a reminder to other police personnel that they should refrain from similarly playing online games, as they too could face disciplinary action.”