Expecting the BJP to garner the highest number of seats, in nearly two decades, in the upcoming Gujarat elections, bookies are eyeing the turnover in the illegal market to touch nearly ₹40,000-50,000 crore. The Gujarat elections have been scheduled in two phases on December 1 and 5 and the results will be declared on December 8.
In 2002, BJP had won 127 seats in the 182-seat State Assembly, under the leadership of the then Chief Minister Narendra Modi. This time, bookies expect the party to win at least 120 seats. A key catalyst for such high expectations is that the party is not facing any backlash from the dominant Patel community, unlike in 2017. Back then, BJP’s tally had fallen to 99, the lowest since 2002.
Hardik Patel, the face of the Patel agitation during the 2017 elections, joined the BJP in June this year. The Patel community forms 12-14 percent of the population, and bookies believe they will vote for the BJP en masse.
The seat tally for Congress is expected to be restricted to between 15 and 30, a drastic fall from 77 in 2017. The AAP will eat up 10-20 seats of the Congress, said bookies.
Similar trends are visible in Himachal Pradesh too, where polls are scheduled on November 12. There too, BJP is expected to retain power, said bookies.