Exclusive: Bollywood has pumped R 5-7 crore in Indo-Pak match, says bookie

Mumbai: Bollywood and betting have always made strange bedfellows. That the film industry’s bold and beautiful enjoy a little uninhibited flutter at the racecourse (particularly on Derby outings) is known. Now comes the revelation that much of the big money pumped into betting on cricket matches, comes from Bollywood’s deep pockets. And of particular interest to the film industry, given the standoff between the two nations, is a fixture played anywhere by those great rivals – India and Pakistan.

If a UAE-based bookie is to be believed (and in these days, they are), then crores of rupees are riding on the outcome of the crucial Indo-Pak cricket ODI that will be played in Mirpur, Bangladesh, for the Asia Cup this afternoon. The last time these two teams played each other was exactly a year ago for the World Cup semifinal in Mohali; and the loser, Pakistan, had to exit the tournament.
Today, it is a do-or-die situation only for India in the Asia Cup, because Pakistan with two wins and a bonus point has already made the final. So, naturally, the stakes and passions are pretty high.
According to the UAE bookie, between Rs 5 crore to Rs 7 crores has been placed in today’s match by Bollywood.
"Bollywood ke bhaut saare log humare sub bookies ke paas maal lagate hani (many people from Bollywood place their money),” he told this correspondent in confidence. His sub bookies and punters allegedly accept bets from our film personalities.
“Har ek badi series mein zyada maal Bollywood se lagta hain (during big series most of the money is pumped in by Bollywood). Aur aaj ke game mein paanch se saath khokha (crore) ab tak lag chuka hain (for today's match Rs 5cr to Rs 7cr have already been placed),” he added. "Saare film financer aur producer saath mein kuch top ke hero unke nazdeeki logon ke hawale book apne yeha khulvate (open) hain.”
As to what happens to the huge amounts of black money accepted by the actors, it is reportedly pumped into developers in India or UAE while the rest in punting with the bookies, the UAE bookie revealed. “Saara paisa hawale se aata hain aur agar woh filmi hasti jeet jaye toh return mein bhari (expensive) gifts aur imported cars se settlement hota hain. (all the money is transfered through hawala and if an actor wins then he gets the amount in the form of expensive gifts or imported cars). Kahi baar payments US dollar ke zariye bhi hotien hain (many times the payment is done against US dollars),” added the bookie.   
A Bollywood producer, notorious for backing the wrong movies and coming a cropper at the box office, admitted, "We put some money on betting but don't take huge risks. However, the industry is not involved in malicious match fixing activities. It is not our cup of tea."
Source - Daily Bhasker
Wonder what role the Bollywood beauties, whom the UK press is convinced have the power, connections and sex appeal to fix matches, play in today’s Indo-Pak tie at Mirpur. Perhaps, the outcome will tell on which team their money and prayers were today.

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