Karnataka: KSRLMA claims state is losing Rs 6000 crore annually due to ban on paper lottery

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According to C Ramakrishna, president of the Karnataka State Retail Lottery Merchants Association, the presence and growth of online gambling and e-lottery is costing the state Rs 6000 crores annually. Speaking on the topic with the media, Ramakrishna said that it is absurd to outlaw paper lotteries in the era of online gambling and e-lottery.

“The neighboring Kerala state is getting a revenue of Rs 6000 crores by efficient regulation and monitoring of the lottery system,” he added.

Ramakrishna further urged the government to adopt the managing system of the Kerala lottery model to help small retailers and the state exchequer. He then explained that the lottery revenue can be used for social welfare schemes of the state including medical facilities for the elderly people.

The wholesale lottery agents can purchase all the printed lottery tickets by paying the sum in full. Tickets for the lottery may also contain advertising that has received government approval. It will be a win-win situation for the government under this method according to Ramakrishna, as quoted by The Hans India.

He then explained that the Supreme Court’s decision to reinstate the lottery programme has not been carried out by the state government of Karnataka. The Karnataka State Government has disobeyed the Supreme Court’s ruling, which was handed down on March 23, 2022, in favor of the states of Kerala and Karnataka and ordered the sale of lottery tickets from outside these states.

The lottery traders from seven other states in the other state-run lottery industry have not reported the retailers’ revenue to the finance department. In this regard, the finance department explicitly stated in the right to information request that no lottery merchants from outside the state had filed their retail documentation.

Additionally, Ramakrishna demanded that the governor of the state of Karnataka look into allowing them to trade in lottery tickets and creating a ministry and a department for lottery. He has also appealed to the Karnataka Government about this but despite many notices to them they have shown no sign of taking any action.

Ramakrishna said, “On January 1, 2023, we met the respected Chief Minister, to honor our plea and to acknowledge our memorandum in bringing the lottery retail back in action by the Karnataka State government and by other state-run lottery systems. With this lottery program, the bordering states such as Kerala, Goa, and Maharashtra are victims of such maligning activities which are illegal, and this can be curbed. In addition, the Mangalmukhis who dominate most of the roads and the signals begging for alms are promised employment with this scheme. This will also make them self-reliant.”