No Bidders for Online Lottery in State
By staff
The governement of a State in Indian, Kerala, attempting to start an online lottery with a private sector in the area to check the massive outflow of money to other States has proven to be a big flop.

Nine applications—worth 20,000 each—were sold on the first day of bidding invitation by the high tender committee comprising the Secretaries of Law, Tax, Industries, information Technology and Finance which was constituted to select a private agent to operate the online lottery of Kerala state.

Not one application form was submitted till 23rd August—the last late for the bidding. Government had advertised in all major newspaper inviting applications for the selection of the private agent who would launch, conduct and market the online lottery.

It was reported that the reason for the unexpected backing out by the private players was to force Government to relax the norms prescribed in the agreement for conducting the online state lottery.

As mentioned in the agreement, the prize payout ratio shall not be any less than 45 per cent of the total revenue from the sales of the tickets. The private agent will have to cough up 25 per cent of the total to the Government as licensing fee as per Government guidelines.

'The bidders have formed a lobby and is pressurising the Government to increase the profit margin,' said an official involved in the process.

The Government has changed the Lotteries Regulations Act, 1998, to the Kerala State Lotteries and online Lotteries Regulation Rules, 2003, in the last Assembly session—with the idea of launching an online lottery of its own.

There is currently a massive outflow of money from Kerala to other states through the online lottery sponsored by other states. By Inviting bidders, the Government is trying to adopt the example of the North-Eastern states, where the Government lotteries are run by private agents.

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