KAKINADA: The state government is planning to conduct Income Tax raids on potential participants in the illegal cockfights during the ensuing Sankranti. Already the police are in the process of getting information about the participants and telephoning them against coming to the likely venues.
The police are keeping an eye on locals and non-locals in towns of East and West Godavari districts. Whoever is coming to participate in cockfights would be booked and arrested.
The second wave of Covid-19 scare and High Court directions to curb cockfights are haunting the police, which has to prevent conduct of the centuries old tradition. West Godavari police officials said that they have informed IT teams to conduct raids on participants.
West Godavari Superintendent of Police K.N. Naick gave strict instructions to the police to take preventive steps against organizing cockfights. The police got bind-over cases on 3,000 persons recently and are conducting raids on cockfight-knife manufacturers and arresting them. They have considered the previous history of organizers and participants and counselling them.
They gathered the phone numbers of the visitors who have already booked rooms in hotels and lodges.
Meanwhile, joint teams have been formed with police and revenue officials in villages to trace those promoting gambling in the name of traditional sports.
East Godavari Superintendent of Police Adnan Nayeem Asmi told this reporter that Sections 144 and 30 are in force. He said that bind-over cases are being booked on organizers. He said that a plan of action has been prepared to curb such gambling events during Sankranti and those found violating the orders would be sternly dealt with.