Lotteries are often seen as the quickest way to make enough money that can change the entire lives of the winners. However, there are also numerous cases when lotteries, due to their addictive nature, have led to ruining of lives and families. That reason largely shaped the Supreme Court’s judgment which allowed the state governments to ban the sale of lotteries in their jurisdictions. However, there has never been a blanket ban and therefore lotteries like Sikkim State Lotteries and Nagaland Lotteries are still in existence, legally.
Lotteries still are about Rs. 50,000 crore business in India, according to a report of Economic Times and in the financial year 2017-18 alone, the states collected close to Rs. 4,000 crores as GST from the sale of lotteries. Presently, out of 29 states and seven union territories in the country, in 13 states lotteries are not banned and the state governments are active parts of these businesses.
About Sikkim State Lotteries
One of the most popular paper lotteries across the country is the Sikkim State Lotteries which is run by the Government of Sikkim. The government also happens to run the biggest online lottery company in India, Playwin.
The Sikkim government runs different schemes throughout the seven days of the week. A weekly scheme known as Derby Weekly Scheme is played on Thursdays of every week which carries the top price of Rs. 11 lakhs. The cost of per Derby Weekly ticket is Rs. 50. Bigwin Jackpot is another weekly scheme played every Saturday carrying the top prize of Rs. 21 lakhs and per ticket of this costs Rs. 10. There are also some special schemes introduced during the festival times or other important occasions. However, it needs to be mentioned that the government often keeps discontinuing old schemes and introducing new schemes.
According to the Government of Sikkim, the purpose of running these lotteries is to generate additional revenues for the government which would be ultimately used for various developmental activities and upliftment programs.
Where to buy the lotteries?
The Sikkim State Lotteries can be bought from an authorized lottery dealer, distributor, marketing agent or selling agent in the lottery-friendly states of the country. Besides Sikkim, the states where selling lotteries are not banned are Kerala, Goa, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Punjab, West Bengal, Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya, Manipur, Nagaland, and Mizoram.
Measures taken by the government to ensure fair play
The government takes various measures to ensure that the draws are free from any fraud and there is absolute transparency of their conduct to the people. Here are some of the ways in which the government eliminates the chances of foul play.
- At the drawing place, any instrument that can transmit an alpha-numeric message or can display/record visuals and audios is strictly prohibited from carrying.
- The lottery tickets are printed in High-Security Press(s) that are included in the panel of Reserve Bank of India or Indian Banks’ Association.
- The presses need to wait for the clear instructions of the government before they can print and supply the tickets to the distributors or marketing and selling agents.
- Besides being published in the official gazette, the results are mandatory to be published in at least one national newspaper and two state newspapers, of which one must be in English. The certified copies of results are also sent to distributors, marketing agents and selling agents.
- The draw machines used for choosing winners are kept visibly transparent to the viewers.
- The distributors and agents need to keep records of all the tickets obtained from the government, tickets that are sold and tickets that remained unsold. Those tickets which remain unsold are returned to the government. The government then destroys them to counter any future malpractice.
How to claim prizes?
The state government authorizes the distributors, marketing agents and selling agents to make payments to the winners of prizes under the value of Rs. 10,000 within 90 days from the announcement of results. For prizes above the value of Rs. 10,000, the winners need to make claim within 90 days from the announcement of results by submitting a claim form mentioning all the details required along with:
- An affidavit from a notary public or first class magistrate specifying his/her ownership on the winning ticket
- 3 attested passport-sized photographs
- Photo identity proof
- PAN details
- Bank details
- A cancelled leaf of a bank account in which the amount is to be credited.
The claim form can be downloaded from here. All the details need to be submitted to the ‘Directorate of Lotteries, Government of Sikkim’. The amounts are made after due verification and deducting TDS.
If the winners fail to make claims within 90 days, the amounts are forfeited to the state government as unclaimed prize money. However, in exceptional cases, the prizes are disbursed if the claims are made after 90 days but not exceeding 120 days if the claimants have a genuine reason for being late.
Other things to keep in mind
1. The state government is very particular about the conditions of the winning tickets and therefore torn or mutilated tickets are not entertained.
2. If someone wins a lottery, it is always a good idea to sign the back of the winning ticket and include his/her address in case the ticket gets lost. This also prevents others from using the ticket to claim the prize.
After everything is said and done, buying lotteries is still technically gambling and if it becomes an obsession, it can ruin lives quite fast. Hence, be wise while buying a lottery ticket.
Note: TopYaps do not promote gambling of any kind. This article is just for news purpose.