Mumbai police raided a Bandra flat and arrested three men on Thursday who were playing poker using a Chinese app.
Police believe the accused were running an online gambling racket in which accounts were opened on the app, but payments between players were settled through hawala channels.
The three men were named as Durgesh Bharat Pawar, Mithul Jayesh Pabari, and Jhalak Jayesh Pabari, all aged between 26-33. Police seized three laptops, five mobile phones, routers, Rs. 90,000, and 2,000 chips.
"As the game is played online on individual's mobile phone and no cash is involved it becomes difficult to arrest and prosecute them. The accused creates groups where one person opens account and the rest members pays him later", said inspector Kedar Pawar, who led the raid following a tip off.
It's not clear if the Chinese app involved was on a list of apps recently banned by the Indian government.
Police and politicians in the country have been more active in taking a stand gambling since the lockdown. Goa police arrested eight at an alleged online gambling shop in June, while Dr S. Ramadoss and K Ramakrishna have recently made public calls for online rummy and other sites and apps to be banned by central and state government.