Ahmedabad: The campaigning has ended. Loudspeakers have fallen silent. However, on the eve of the second and final phase of polling in Gujarat, the underground betting markert in Ahmedabad is buzzing with activity, and it places Chief Minister Narendra Modi as a front runner in the race.
While Modi may be a clear favourite with the bookmakers, the rebels, led by Gujarat Parivartan Party chief Keshubhai Patel have suddenly emerged on the radar after the first phase. They are, for the first time accepting bets on his party as well. Bets are being accepted on the GPP's win on 8 to 10 seats.
The bookmakers offer Rs 40 for every Rs 100 bet if the BJP gets 90 to 100 seats. Profits get higher, upto Rs 350 for every Rs 100 rupee bet on BJP getting more than 120 seats. For the Congress, bookies are citing Rs 30 on every Rs 100 rupee if the party wins 50 seats.
More often than not, the satta bazaar in Gujarat has been an accurate indicator of public mood than psepholigists, and for the moment it predicts a victory for Modi and 100 seats to the BJP. However, the Congress, which believes that winds of change are sweeping Gujarat, says their fortunes will change when the ballot boxes are opened on December 20.