In his letter, Vijay asked the Prime Minister to have a regulatory authority or some kind of commissioner for the orderly conduct of lotteries on the lines of UK lottery commission.
Currently, only nine state -- Maharashtra, Goa, West Bengal, Punjab, Kerala, Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Sikkim and Bodoland area of Assam-- run lotteries. It is up to states to run lotteries or not, but if it is running one it cannot prohibit other states to sell lotteries in its area.
However, there is an anomaly here. GST on lotteries is 12% for those running within states, but 28% for those running outside the state.
Sale of lotteries is projected to fetch Rs 100 billion to the exchequer in Kerala alone under the Budget Estimates for 2018-19. However, Vijay estimates that it has a potential to chip in anywhere between Rs 350-500 billion in a year across the country.
Vijay rolled out statistics of other countries to buttress his point. In USA, the letter says lotteries garner 19.07 billion which go for welfare schemes. In China, $6.66 is collected that go towards sports and another $9.05 is mopped up which helps in welfare schemes of that country. In UK, $ 4.01 billion is collected to fund sports.
The government had announced National
Health Protection Scheme or Modicare for 100 million households or 500 million people. However, critics have taken on the government for not providing sufficient funds for the scheme. They also say that the government has not even estimated the correct amount that is required for the scheme.
In a proposal put up before the expenditure finance committee (EFC), the Union Health Ministry and the Niti Aayog have suggested that the total cost of Modicare would be around Rs 250 billion, including Rs 100 billion that is to be borne by state governments, for 2018-19 and 2019-20. Niti Aayog, which is said to be brainchild behind the scheme, however, said this cost was based on “assumption”.
This tantamount to a premium of Rs 1082 per family. As per the current practices in the medical insurance field, the rate of premium is in the range of Rs 5,000 or above for a cover of Rs 500,000 per family. Niti has asked the ministry to prepare a realistic estimate of insurance premium after taking into account the prevalent market rates.
Sugal & Damani works as a distributor for state lotteries and provides lottery operational technology to 17 jurisdictions across the globe.