237 lottery draws suspended due to lockdown curbs

Prize allocation raised by 1.5% to boost lottery sales, says Balagopal

As many as 237 lottery draws have been suspended owing to the lockdown restrictions necessitated by the two COVID-19 waves in the State, Finance and Lotteries Minister K.N. Balagopal has said.

The crisis in the lottery sector has severely hit the State’s revenue, he said, adding that efforts were being made to bring lottery sales on track by conducting at least three draws every week with the easing of the curbs.

Replying to questions by Vazhoor Soman, P.S. Supal, V.R. Sunil Kumar and Muhammed Muhsin (Communist Party of India) in the Assembly on Thursday, Mr. Balagopal said the government did not intend to launch any new lotteries under the bleak scenario.

Welfare schemes

Elaborating on the welfare schemes undertaken by the government for lottery agents, the Minister said an immediate assistance of ₹1,000 each was distributed to all active members of the Kerala State Lottery Agents and Sellers Welfare Fund Board during both lockdowns. While active members and pensioners were provided lottery tickets worth ₹3,500 and ₹2,000 respectively during the first wave, they were provided tickets worth ₹,3000 and ₹1,000 respectively this year.

As part of boosting lottery sales, the government has increased the lottery prize allocation by 1.5%. In addition, the agency prize has been hiked by 2% for amounts other than ₹100 and from 10% to 20% for ₹100. A 0.5% increase has also been effected in each agency discount slab, he said.

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