37 ar­rested for gam­bling

Business Bhutan - - Nation - Dechen Dolkar from Thim­phu

Thim­phu po­lice ar­rested 37 peo­ple in­volved in 10 gam­bling cases this year alone.

Ac­cord­ing to the po­lice, the lat­est ar­rest in­volv­ing three peo­ple was made on July 2. Of the to­tal ar­rested, 32 were male and five fe­male.

Of the 10 cases, eight in­volved play­ing cards and two dice.

Po­lice said that three cases are un­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion and seven cases have been chargesheeted to the Thim­phu Dis­trict court.

The Thim­phu dis­trict court reg­is­tered nine gam­bling cases as of now at crim­i­nal bench I and II. The cases are un­der process of hear­ing.

Po­lice said that they usu­ally act on a tip off.

Sec­tion 393 of Pe­nal Code of Bhutan 2004 states that a de­fen­dant would be guilty of the of­fence of gam­bling if the de­fen­dant stakes or wa­gers some­thing of value upon the out­come of a con­test of chance or a fu­ture con­tin­gent event not un­der the de­fen­dant’s con­trol or in­flu­ence upon an agree­ment or un­der­stand­ing that the de­fen­dant will re­ceive some­thing of value in the event of a cer­tain out­come.

The of­fence of gam­bling will be a petty mis­de­meanor. If con­victed, the de­fen­dant shall be li­able to a max­i­mum im­pris­on­ment of less than one year and a min­i­mum term of one month.

In the 47th ses­sion of the Na­tional Assem­bly (NA) res­o­lu­tion in 1977, the NA de­cided that gam­bling in towns, dis­tricts and vil­lages of the coun­try would be com­pletely baned with ef­fect from Jan­uary 1, 1978.

The is­sue of ban­ning gam­bling was dis­cussed in sev­eral ses­sions of the assem­bly since it has a lot of im­pli­ca­tions on so­ci­ety and fam­i­lies.

The 86th ses­sion of the NA in 2007 had re­solved to ban trade fairs and gam­bling ac­tiv­i­ties dur­ing Tsechus, and wang and lung cer­e­monies. The Min­istry of Home and Cul­tural Af­fairs is­sued a cir­cu­lar to the Dzong­das, chair­men and lo­cal lead­ers di­rect­ing them to strictly en­force a ban on gam­bling.

Although gam­bling is il­le­gal in the coun­try, it is still ram­pant across the coun­try and es­pe­cially in ur­ban hubs.

Po­lice said they are try­ing to cre­ate aware­ness on the is­sue through so­cial me­dia.

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