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Political betting hits new high

Wednesday, 14 May 2014 - 7:50am IST | Agency: dna

With only two days left for the results of the most-exciting Lok Sabha elections, the betting world has gone into a frenetic pace of activity. "Never in the past have elections generated so much interest in betting as this poll. Don't be surprised if the total bets placed on the election outcome cross the Rs10,000-crore mark," a leading bookie told dna on Tuesday night.

The exit poll results, which were released by various agencies on Monday evening, have only added to the overall excitement, he added.

The `bhav' or odds on Narendra Modi becoming the prime minister was 12 paise, which means that for every rupee you bet on him winning you get Rs1.12. And on Rahul Gandhi becoming it is Rs50, which means that the betting world do not expect him to be anywhere near the PM's post. The general indication in bookiedom is that the BJP, on the basis of its own strength, will bag 246 seats which is short of the magic figure of 272.

The `bhav' on this is 90 paise. The BJP securing 272 on the basis of its own steam is Rs5, which shows that the saffron party will be forced to take the help of other parties to form the next government. The `bhav' of the Congress winning 70 seats is 90 paise, sources said. Intense betting activity is being witnessed in Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Surat, Indore, Delhi, Karachi, Dubai and London.

In Mumbai Central-North parliamentary constituency, Priya Dutt, sitting Congress MP, is commanding 60 paise, while her principal opponent Poonam Mahajan of the BJP, who put up a tough fight, has Rs1.40 placed on her victory.

In South Mumbai, Milind Deora of the Congress, who is seeking re-election for the third successive term, has a `bhav' of 50 paise and his principal rival, Arvind Sawant of the Shiv Sena-BJP alliance, has Rs1.70.

In Mumbai North-East, sitting MP of the NCP Sanjay Patil's `bhav' is 60 paise and that of his primary rival, Kirit somaiya of BJP Rs 1.40. In Mumbai south-central sitting 75-year-old Congress M.P. Eknath Gaikwad has 90 paise bet on his victory and his arch rival, Rahul Shewale of Shiv Sena-BJP 50 paise.

In Mumbai north-west, sitting MP Gurudas Kamat of the Congress has improved his position and now has a `bhav' of 50 paise and his main rival, Gajanan Kirtikar of the Shiv Sena-BJP combine has Rs1.70 and in Mumbai North the bettors seem to be favouring Gopal Shetty of the BJP with 50 paise and sitting Congress MP Sanjay Nirupam 70 paise.

Nitin Gadkari of the BJP is being favoured in Nagpur with the `bhav' being 40 paise. There is speculation that he may be made the Union home minister with the `bhav' being 50 paise, while some bettors feel that he may replace Rajnath Singh as the BJP chief (Rs1.30) since that is what the RSS wanted him to be originally. The RSS was keen on giving him yet another term by amending the BJP constitution, but a vitriolic campaign against him paid put to its plan. Now with the Income Tax department categorically stating that it has no problem with the returns filed by Gadkari, the way has been cleared for his elevation.

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