THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: While fake tickets of state lotteries are rampant, the government lacks a proper enforcement wing to check the fraud, says the CAG Report on Revenue tabled in the Assembly on Tuesday. It said the District Lottery Offices received 3,48,699 fake tickets between 2011 and 2017. “When these tickets were identified as fake, those were returned to the presenters. In a few cases in which the presenters insisted on prizes, the tickets were sent to the DSL for verification.” the report said.
According to the Section 26(2) of the Kerala Tax on Paper Lotteries Act 2005, any person who is found to be in possession of unaccounted lottery tickets is liable for a penalty of Rs one lakh. However, the Taxes Secretary offered a strange explanation to the CAG on the issue. He said there was no revenue loss to the government owing to the existence of fake lottery tickets as they are Xerox/scanned copies of prize-winning tickets made after the draw.
The state government said the agents who present the tickets are not aware that the tickets are fake. It also said cases were registered for production of fake tickets.“Inquiry in the cases is progressing and penal provisions could be initiated only on completion of the inquiry,” the government said. The CAG observed the government reply was not acceptable as per the Lottery (Regulation) Rules, 2010. The rules state the organising state should device suitable means and procedures to effectively supervise the conduct of lotteries to avoid any malpractice.
Karunya Benevolent Fund
Audit at the Lotteries Department found that 1,520 beneficiaries who have sanctioned assistance for taking treatment in six hospitals did not avail of the scheme. Hence Rs 19.68 crore sanctioned from the KBF was lying dormant in the bank accounts of the hospitals. Actual expenditure for 3,142 beneficiaries was less than 20 per cent of the amount transferred. Rs 40.96 crore was lying in the account of hospitals in this regard.