Betting is the latest crime gripping the city and, surprisingly, here the “accused” are not petty criminals but the so-called “aristocrats” of society. Just visit any private party, posh club and bar in Patna during the ongoing World Cup matches, these “aristocrats” will be found hooked to the match and their phones.
Betting is done in many city hotels also which host live matches, offering exclusive meal and drinks packages.
A bookie of the city said betting is done with the help of bookies based in Kolkata, Delhi, Bangalore and Mumbai. Patnaites mostly participate in betting through the main bookie in Mumbai, who fixes the betting rate.
SSP Jitender Rana said, “Here guessing game is more common than betting since the kingpin is away from the city. We arrested 21 persons involved in guessing game from the Khajekalan police station area on Monday night.”
Another police official said, “Betting is done through a local agent. He gives a code to his clients and contacts them through their code names or numbers registered with him. If someone else calls through other phone number, then the bookie will not pick up the phone. Only the clients registered with the code numbers can bet.”
The network of bookies is connected to worldwide online markets and particular telephone numbers. Money is transacted through Internet banking, he said.
A client explained that betting is done on toss, runs in a session of 10 overs, opening pairs, players’ expected score and finally the fate of the match. Favourite teams have high rates, like if India and Pakistan play, rate quoted by the bookie is Rs 4,000 to Rs10,000, he said and added they use ‘paisa’ word instead of ‘thousand’ to avoid interception by law enforcing agencies.