Move over IPL (Indian Premier League), the cricket extravaganza whose season 7 starts in Abu Dhabi’s Sheikh Zayed Stadium on April 16. It is no longer the biggest charm for the bookies.
Move in Indian Political League, the awesome and breath-taking phenomenon of the world’s largest democracy’s biggest exercise of general elections which is currently on involving 814 million electorate. The bookies are paying a deep-focus attention on the Indian elections as this is where the moolah is.
Nobody has the exact figures of how much money is being spent on election betting as every day huge monies are being poured in for this 36-day-long polling process, but insiders say bets worth billions of dollars have been funnelled already. A unique feature of betting is that a person doesn’t have to pay any money upfront at the time of placing a bet. The better has to pay up in the event of a loss or gets paid if the bet pays off.
Much of the money is riding on Narendra Modi, the Bharatiya Janata Party’s prime ministerial candidate and odds clearly favor Modi while Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Arvind Kejriwal has the highest odds. In other words, Modi is most likely to be India’s next prime minister while Kekriwal is least likely.
Sample the rates. A bet of INR100,000 for Modi becoming PM will fetch only INR25,000 if that happens. In contrast, a bet of the similar amount on Kejriwal becoming Prime Minister will fetch an astoundingly high return of INR50 million.
Per rupee basis, Modi is commanding a price of 42 paise on one INR, while the figure for other Indian politicians is as follows: Rahul Gandhi (INR6.5), Mamata Banerjee (INR16), Kejriwal (INR500) and Mulayam Singh Yadav (INR11).
One bookie has even predicted that the BJP alone would be getting as many as 317 out of total 543 Lok Sabha seats. The identities of the bookies are seldom disclosed. In any case, that is hardly relevant as the people know and understand only the language of money.
This bookie has even given a state-wise break-up of the BJP’s 317 seats to buttress his claim. Though this list seems to be way off the mark and the punter has given far too many seats to the BJP in such states like West Bengal, Tamil Nadu and Kerala where the BJP does not have much presence, here is the break-up where the first figure indicates the seats which the BJP is likely to win and the second figure puts the total number of Lok Sabha seats in that state.
1.Madhya Pradesh 26/29; 2. Uttar Pradesh 50/80; 3. Andhra Pradesh 26/42; 4. Arunachal Pradesh 1/2; 5. Assam 7/14; 6. Bihar 30/40; 7. Chattisgarh 11/11; 8. Goa 2/2; 9. Gujarat 24/26; 10. Haryana 4/10; 11. Himachal Pradesh 1/4; 12. Jammu and Kashmir 1/6; 13. Jharkhand 10/14; 14. Karnataka 18/28; 15. Kerala 4/20; 16. Maharashtra 35/48; 17. Manipur 0/2; 18. Meghalaya 0/2; 19. Mizoram 0/1; 20. Nagaland 0/1; 21. Odissa 7/21; 22. Punjab 8/13; 23. Rajasthan 23/25; 24. Sikkim 0/1; 25. Tamil Nadu 8/39; 26. Tripura 0/2; 27. Uttarakhand 4/5; 28. West Bengal 12/42; 29. Delhi-6/7; 30. Andaman 0/1; 31. Chandigarh 1/1; 32. Dadra & Nagar Haveli 0/1; 33. Daman and Diu 0/1; 34. Lakshadeep 1/1; 35. Pondicherry 0/1. Total- 317/543