A kindly, cheaper Sri Lanka gestures the shadowy betting apps. In the middle of the glare of investigation on the online gambling empire Mahadev and as Dubai turns too hot for comfort, some of the other faceless operators of illegal betting apps are moving to Sri Lanka.

They are setting up some offshore call centers and offices, which serve as the backbone for these apps, in Lanka. These centers, staffed by people who interact with agents in India, maintain servers, reconcile accounts, and manage the books.
An army of staff huddles together in villas, quietly running the operations. They are attending a lot of websites floated by a betting syndicate, largely cut off from the outside world.
A source told Economic Times that Lanka is struggling to overcome its economic crisis. Such bungalows are available in and around Colombo at just a fraction of what it would cost in Dubai. More importantly, after the arrests linked to Mahadev, and the Dubai CID or criminal investigation department handling complex crimes turning active, the syndicates are feeling the heat in UAE, at least for now.
The UAE’s stronger ties with India and recent promptness in sharing information have unnerved the players. They have sensed a change in the environment.
The shift to Sri Lanka, by other illegal apps likely to Mahadev, began about four to five months ago. The person mentioned that some of them are linked to Mahadev. They are using the platforms under a different name, having entered into a white-labeling arrangement with the group.
People perceive that the island nation’s comparatively cryptic gambling laws and its close trade links with India make it a convenient base for running discreet back offices. This is aside from the lure of an inexpensive destination.