Tamannaah Bhatia summoned by Maharashtra Cyber Cell over FairPlay app promotion

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Actress Tamannaah Bhatia has been summoned by the Maharashtra cyber cell in connection with the promotion of a subsidiary app of the Mahadev online gaming and betting application. The summon comes amidst allegations of illegal streaming of Indian Premier League (IPL) matches on the FairPlay betting app.

As reported by Hindustan Times, Ms. Bhatia, known for her roles in ‘Baahubali’ and ‘Lust Stories 2’, has been called upon as a witness and has been asked to appear before the cyber cell next week. This move follows similar summonses issued to other celebrities including Sanjay Dutt, who reportedly endorsed the FairPlay app.

The FairPlay app, a betting exchange platform, had reportedly streamed some IPL matches illegally in 2023, leading to losses for the official broadcaster, Viacom18. The broadcaster, which held broadcasting rights for the cricket tournament, filed a complaint with the Maharashtra cyber cell over digital copyright infringement.

According to sources, the Maharashtra cyber cell has already recorded statements from singer Badshah and the managers of actors Sanjay Dutt and Jacqueline Fernandez in connection with the case.

This development puts light on the scrutiny faced by the Mahadev online gaming app and its subsidiaries. The Mahadev app has been the subject of investigation by various authorities over illegal transactions and betting activities. In recent times, there has been arrests connected to the Mahadev app.

In a separate investigation last year, actors Ranbir Kapoor and Shraddha Kapoor, who have appeared in advertisements for the Mahadev app, were summoned by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) for questioning. The ED’s investigation into the Mahadev app-linked money laundering case has reportedly revealed involvement from high-ranking politicians and bureaucrats from Chhattisgarh.

The Mahadev app, operated by individuals based in Dubai, has faced accusations of using tactics to attract customers, including creating new websites and closed groups on chat apps, as well as running paid advertisements on social media platforms.

As the investigation also reveals, the involvement of celebrities in promoting such apps raises questions about their responsibility in endorsing illegal activities. When Tamannaah Bhatia was called in for questioning, it made people pay more attention to how famous people are connected to gambling websites online. This is making more people say that celebrities should be more responsible and open about the things they endorse. 

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