Upswing in lottery ticket sales as fortune-seekers pitch in
By M S Vidyanandan / ENS - THIRUVANANTHAPURAM
05th August 2012 08:58 AM
The state is witnessing a mad rush of fortune-seekers forcing the State Lotteries Department to up the printing of tickets by around 13 lakh in just two months.
The printing of four lotteries of Rs 20 denomination which was launched in the market this week were hiked from 30 lakh to 32.5 lakh each. The number of tickets of two lotteries of Rs 40 denomination were also increased from 15 lakh to 16.5 lakh each.
This is the second time this year that the department is increasing the number of tickets. Lotteries of Rs 20 and Rs 40 denominations were upped by 5 and 2.5 lakh respectively in last April. The demand for Karunya, the charity lottery, has also gone up and 2.5 lakh additional tickets will be printed from next month, the officials said.
‘’We are printing tickets to the maximum capacity to meet the heavy demand,’’ said Lotteries Director Biju Prabhakar.
‘’The two security presses are now working overtime to print sufficient number of tickets,’’ he added. Prabhakar also hinted of putting a ceiling on the number of tickets sold to an agent.
‘’We plan to restrict the number of tickets to 25,000 or the like. A decision in this regard will be taken at a meeting of DLOs next week,’’ he said.
However, the increase in the number of tickets is far below the demand resulting in the District Lottery Offices witnessing heated exchanges between officials and agents who ask for more tickets. The Kerala State Lottery Agents Association alleges that big agents are bribing officials for more tickets which adversely affected small-scale agents.
‘Fortune bundles’ a big hit
T’Puram: To satiate the spirit of lottery maniacs, several agents are selling ‘fortune bundles’ of lottery tickets which have same numerical ending. They are bought by persons who wish a multiplied result for prizes of Rs 2,000, Rs 5,000 and Rs 10,000 which are given on the basis of the last four digits.
The ‘fortune bundles’ which come in sets of 15, 20 or 25 tickets have become a huge hit among regular buyers, especially in the northern districts of Malappuram and Kannur. It is learnt that some large-scale agents who are alleged to be selling banned three-digit lotteries are supplying fortune bundles to small agents.
An agent who was contacted by ‘Express’ said that ‘bundled tickets’ had regular takers among the young and the aged alike. ‘’It gives you a multiplied result and several of my customers have benefited from the fortune sets,’’ he claimed.
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