A daily-wager from the tribal community in Kannur district in Kerala has bagged the first prize of Rs 12 crore of the Chrismas-New Year bumper lottery of the Kerala government, the result of which was announced in state capital Thiruvananthapuram on Monday afternoon.
Rajan Perunnon, who resides in the Kurichya colony in Malur panchayat, had bought the winning ticket ST 269609 from a vendor in Koothuparambu, a town in Kannur district. On Tuesday, Rajan, accompanied by his family, formally handed over the winning ticket to a local cooperative bank to kickstart the process of disbursal.
Rajan works as a daily-wage labourer on agricultural land and his wife, Rajani, is a temporary staff member at a local anganwadi. The couple has two daughters and a son.
Talking to indianexpress.com over the phone, Rajan said he buys lottery tickets every day with the expectation that he would win big. And that day has now come. In the past, he has won smaller lottery prizes of Rs 1000, Rs 2000 and Rs 5000. From winning small prizes comes the encouragement to buy tickets again, he said.
“There have been many occasions where I have missed out very closely. Recently, I missed out on a Rs 50000 prize. The series number of my ticket was very close to the winning ticket,” he laughs.
As fate would have it, Rajan has coveted the envious Rs 12 crore prize at a time when his home is on the verge of being repossessed by a bank due to loan default. He had taken out a loan to build his home and to fund his daughter’s marriage. But he had been unable to repay the loan and his house was mortgaged.
“I had bought the lottery ticket the same day when I had gone to the bank to talk about the loan. I told them that I was looking for a fresh loan from another bank and to ask for more time. They (Bank officials) told me to repay the existing loan quickly. Mercifully, the ticket I took has won,” he said.
“I believe in God. That’s all I have.”
As soon as the prize money gets deposited in his bank account, Rajan aims to clear his debt and expand his home. He also wants to educate his younger daughter Akshara, who’s currently in class 12. While his elder daughter Athira is married, his son Vigil also goes for daily-wage work with him.
As per lottery ticket rules, Rajan is expected to receive Rs 7.2 crores as prize money after deducting tax and agency commission. The agency that sells the winning ticket gets 10% of the prize money including GST.
The state government claimed that it sold nearly 36 lakh tickets of the Christmas-New Year bumper lottery out of the 40 lakh tickets that were printed. Each ticket costs Rs 300. The government is expected to rake in a profit of Rs 29.93 crores out of the bumper lottery ticket sales this time.
The Christmas-New Year bumper lottery second prize is Rs 5 crore (Rs 50 lakh distributed equally among 10 persons) and third prize is Rs 1 crore (Rs 10 lakhs each for 10 persons). There are other smaller prizes as well.
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